Born in Odessa, Russian Empire, Gilbert moved to the United States as a young man and eventually established himself as one of the leading songwriters on Tin Pan Alley.
Gilbert began his career touring with John L. Sullivan and singing in a quartet at small Coney Island café called "College Inn", where he was discovered by English producer Albert Decourville. Decourville brought him to London as part of The Ragtime Octet. Gilbert's first songwriting success came in 1912 when F. A. Mills Music Publishers published his song Waiting For the Robert E. Lee (melody by composer Lewis F. Muir).
Gilbert moved to Hollywood in 1915, and began writing for film, television, and radio (including the Eddie Cantor show). Gilbert wrote the theme lyrics for the popular children's Television Western Hopalong Cassidy, which first aired in 1949 on NBC. He was an innovator in his field, having been one of the first songwriters to begin publishing and promoting a catalog of his own works. He served as the director of ASCAP from 1941 to 1944, and was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1970.
He died in Los Angeles, California on July 12, 1970. His original gravesite was at Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery in Culver City (Mausoleum, Court of Sages, Crypt 223) but he was later reinterred at Forest Lawn Cemetery (Cathedral City) near Palm Springs, California.
Read more about this topic: L. Wolfe Gilbert
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