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St. Paul, Minn. —
A native of the Hawkeye State, Meredith Willson played with John Philip Sousa's band and with the New York Philharmonic before he worked in Hollywood … in radio, no less.
Wilson has written some great standard tunes in the popular repertoire (such as "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas"), and he also wrote the musical The Unsinkable Molly Brown, but it's the story of the con-man-turned-good-guy by an Iowa librarian that became a classic when The Music Man premiered on the big screen in 1962.
Robert Preston sings "Ya Got Trouble," also featured in the video below.