Log In

Loonis Reeves McGlohon Edit Profile

composer , pianist , Broadcasting executive

Loonis Reeves McGlohon, American broadcasting executive, pianist, composer. Recipient Peabody award, 1977-1978, Atlantic City Press award, 1986, North Carolina award, 1989; named Alumnus of Year, East Carolina University, 1983, North Carolina Composer of Year, 1983; grantee National Endowment for the Arts, 1979.


McGlohon, Loonis Reeves was born on September 29, 1921 in Ayden, North Carolina, United States. Son of Max Cromwell and Bertha (Andrews) McGlohon.


Bachelor of Science, East Carolina University, 1942. HHD (honorary), University North Carolina, 1986. HHD (honorary), East Carolina University, 1990.

HHD (honorary), Winthrop University, 1997. HHD (honorary), Belmont Abbey College, 1998.


After a spell in the Air Force during World War II, he played with the Jimmy Dorsey and Jack Teagarden orchestras and became involved with broadcasting in Charlotte, North Carolina, working as music director for WBT (AM) radio and WBTV (Charlotte's CBS-TV affiliate). McGlohon was an accompanist to many well-known singers including Judy Garland, Mabel Mercer and Eileen Farrell. Among the songs that McGlohon wrote with Wilder are "Blackberry Winter", "Be a Child" and "While We're Young".

McGlohon, like Wilder, could write both music and lyrics, and for the song "Songbird" he wrote both. With Wilder, he also wrote music and lyrics for the former North Carolina outdoor attraction Land of Oz. For his hometown of Charlotte, North Carolina McGlohon wrote the music for LeGette Blythe's outdoor drama, "The Hornet's Nest," staged in June and July, 1968 at a new amphitheater at the University of North Carolina - Charlotte.

The two principal songs were, "This is the Day!" and "What Will the World be Like!" McGlohon allowed the College of William and Mary Choir to include "This is the day!" in its repertoire for many years. In 1980, Frank Sinatra recorded two of his songs with Alec Wilder - "South to a Warmer Place" and "A Long Night" - on the album She Shot Me Down. The result was North Carolina Is My Home, a symphonic work with narration and vocals which became a recording, public TV broadcast, live presentation and coffee table book.

McGlohon was inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame in 1999. At the age of 80, he died following a long-term battle with lymphoma. NationsBank Performance Place in Charlotte's Spirit Square was named Loonis McGlohon Theatre in a January 9, 1998 event.

In 2004, the biography Loonis! Celebrating a Lyrical Life (written by Jerry Shinn) was published by the East Carolina University Foundation.


  • He was co-host of the Peabody Award-winning NPR radio series American Popular Song with his friend and collaborator, Alec Wilder.


  • Other Work

    • Composer over 200 compositions and works, including many recorded jazz and popular pieces such as Blackberry Winter, The Wine of May, A Long Night: co-writer with Alec Wilder (opera) Mountain Boy. Various commissions for religious works. Film scores.

      New museum version of Land of Oz, 1970-1973. Syndicated television feature museum scores, including Come Blow Your Horn, 1966, others. Score for symphonic drama The Hornets Nest, 1965.

      Guest performer North Carolina Symphony, also performed in China, Japan, Singapore and London, 1987, Carnegie Hall, 1987, 88. As pianist toured with Eileen Farrell, Mabel Mercer, Judy Garland. Recording artist over 20 albums with Eileen Farrell, Tony Bennett, Dick Haymes, Margaret Whiting, London Philharmonic, 1990, others.

      Co-host (public television show) American Popular Songs, 1976-1980.


Organizer North Carolina Agency Big Brothers American, 1972, vice president, 1972-1973. Producer, chairman March of Dimes Telerama, 1972. Board directors Cultural Arts Committee of Charlotte, National Conference of Christians and Jews, Easter Seal Society, Big Brothers Served with United States Army Air Force, 1942-1945.

Member AGAC, Broadcast Music Inc., Public Relations Society of America, Nordisk, JASRAC, Charlotte Athletic Club.


Married Nan Lovelace, June 19, 1943. Children: Reeves, Fan, Laurie.

Max Cromwell McGlohon

Bertha (Andrews) McGlohon

Nan Lovelace

Reeves McGlohon

Fan McGlohon

Laurie McGlohon