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James W. Mercer

Vaudeville performer, musician

James W. Mercer, vaudeville performer and musician, died from congestive heart failure Sept. 26 at his North Shore, Calif., home. He was 86.

Mercer, a resident of Lake Arrowhead, Calif., had spent the last 11 years performing with brother Bud in “The Fabulous Palm Springs Follies,” a vaudeville show reminiscent of early 20th century variety shows.

The Mercer brothers began their vaudeville career in 1929, performing in small venues during the Great Depression. For over 70 years, Mercer performed in legit, pic and TV productions, including a 1949 appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show.”

Mercer is survived by a daughter; son Brad, a musician and performer, and another son; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

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