OCTOBER 16, 2014 – Singer TIM HAUSER (b. December 12, 1941 in Troy, New York as Timothy DuPron Hauser) died of cardiac arrest at the Robert Packer hospital in Sayre, Pennsylvania at age 72 after having been admitted to the hospital for pneumonia. He was survived by his wife Barb; a son, Basie; and a daughter, Lily.Best known as a founding member of the vocal group The Manhattan Transfer, Hauser, his sister Fayette, and their parents moved to the Jersey Shore when he was seven years old.
He lived in Ocean Township, New Jersey, and Asbury Park and attended St. Rose High School in Belmar, where an award in his name has been given every year since 1989 to students who excel in theater arts.When he was fifteen, he began to sing professionally. He founded a doo-wop quartet named The Criterions which recorded two singles for the Cecilia label: “I Remain Truly Yours” and “Don’t Say Goodbye” and appeared on Alan Freed’s “Big Beat Show.” Hauser also developed his producing skills at an early age. When he was 17, he produced a tune entitled “Harlem Nocturne” for The Viscounts. The song reached the #3 spot on the Billboard chart in 1959.
Interestingly, it was Tim’s father who picked “Harlem Nocturne” to record from The Viscount’s repertoire.In 1959, Hauser entered Villanova University. With Tommy West and Jim Ruf, both from The Criterions, he formed the folk group the Troubadours Three. He also was a member of the Villanova Singers and the Villanova Spires/Coventry Lads with classmate Jim Croce. He spent four years on the staff of college radio station WWVU. In 1963, he graduated from Villanova with a degree in economics.In 1964, Hauser served in the United States Air Force and the New Jersey Air National Guard. In 1965, he began his career in marketing. From 1965–66, Hauser worked as a market research analyst with the advertising agency Sullivan, Stauffer, Colwell, and Bayles. His accounts included Pepsodent Toothpaste (Lever Bros.), Micrin Mouthwash (Johnson & Johnson), and Rise Shaving Cream (Carter Products). From 1966–1968, he worked as manager of the Market Research Department for the Special Products Division of Nabisco. His accounts included cereal and pet food.In 1969, he formed the first version of The Manhattan Transfer with Gene Pistilli, Marty Nelson, Erin Dickins, and Pat Rosalia.
The group had a jazz/R&B sound and recorded the album “Jukin’” for Capitol Records under manager Richard Flanzer. However, this version of the group dissolved after one album.Tim took odd jobs to support himself while still pursuing his musical career. One of his jobs was taxicab driving, where he drove the night line. He had lots of good stories from those days, but the best story is the one that began when he picked up a tall red-haired waitress who flagged him down one April night in 1972. The waitress, an aspiring singer, was Laurel Masse. During the cab ride, Tim mentioned he was a singer and was the organizer of the previous Manhattan Transfer. Laurel was hip to their music, having seen them perform at The Fillmore East. She also had a copy of Jukin’. They stopped for coffee and discussed music, and they arranged to meet again.
Shortly after meeting Laurel in his cab, Tim was once more driving his cab when he picked up the conga player for the group Laurel Canyon. Through the course of the conversation, the conga player invited Tim to a party, where he met Janis Siegel. She was a member of Laurel Canyon. Tim was impressed with Janis, and together with Laurel, they decided to reform The Manhattan Transfer. They needed a fourth partner, a male voice. Someone suggested they contact Alan Paul, who was appearing in the Broadway cast of “Grease” at the time. As it turns out, Paul had heard Janis perform before. They all met, and talked about music, and how there was a lack of four-part harmony in the music of the time. They shared their ideas, and the chemistry was there.With Massé they reformed The Manhattan Transfer. They needed a male singer, so they contacted Alan Paul. The four became The Manhattan Transfer on October 1, 1972. After a car accident, Massé decided to leave the group and pursue a solo career, and in 1978 Cheryl Bentyne was hired to replace her. From then on, the line-up was mostly unchanged, with only occasional substitutions due to illness.The Manhattan Transfer won ten Grammy Awards and many Gold and Platinum records. They won the Downbeat and Playboy readers’ polls every year in the 1980s for best vocal group. In 2007, they won the JazzTimes Readers’ Poll for best vocal group. When Ahmet Ertegün founded the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, he selected Hauser to serve on the voting committee, a position he held for three years (1986–89). In 1993, Hauser was awarded an honorary doctorate degree from the Berklee College of Music.Hauser produced music for several other artists, including Richie Cole’s Pop Bop, and the last session of Eddie Jefferson.
He produced the soundtrack to the film “The Marrying Man,” in which he also made his acting debut as Woody the bandleader.Tim’s other interests included tennis, baseball, collecting and restoring classic automobiles, and of course, collecting records. This lifelong hobby began back in 1957 when during the holidays his mom and dad gave him an RCA Golden Throat 45-rpm phonograph and the record “Heebie Jeebies” by Little Richard. Tim was also an expert of jazz history, and was the creator of “I Made Sauce,” a pasta sauce that is the result of his culinary skills. He made the sauce for friends and family for years, and sold it commercially. Hauser’s first solo album, “Love Stories,” was released on September 5, 2007 by King Records in Japan. At the time of his death, Hauser was residing in California.The Hauser Family announced on October 22nd their plans to install a $10,000 memorial bench and plaque at Arcadia, California’s Los Angeles Arboretum & Botanical Gardens. Additional costs, for installation and fees, raise that total to $12,500.
The park was the last truly peaceful place Hauser and his wife Barb visited, a month before he died. Since he loved nature so much, his memorial bench will fit right at home amongst the trees, the pond, and the turtles. It was also where the Manhattan Transfer filmed the official video to its 1987 smash hit, “Soul Food To Go.”