Mahlon Clark, Clarinet & Saxophone (1962-1968)
Recorded "Baby Elephant Walk" Song
Mahlon Clark, born March 7, 1923 in Portsmouth VA, played clarinet, saxophone and flute with the Lawrence Welk Show from 1962 to 1968, replacing Don Bonnee. Clark was a versatile clarinet musician who worked with a number of notable jazz artists for many years.
When he was 16, Clark began playing with the Dean Hudson Band. Afterward, he played with the Will Bradley Band and the Ray McKinley Band. Beginning in 1942, Clark served in the U.S. merchant marine. He married Imogene Lynn, a vocalist with the McKinley band. After the war, Clark worked at Paramount Studios. At Paramount, he performed on soundtracks for movies starring Elvis Presley, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, and in films directed by Alfred Hitchcock.
Clark also worked with Tex Beneke and Bob Crosby prior to joining the Welk Orchestra.
While on the show, he married another fellow Lawrence Welk Show performer, Kathy Lennon. They were married from 1967 to 1979.
Clark was replaced on the show by another famous Welk Show clarinetist and Louis Armstrong alumni, Peanuts Hucko.
Clarke passed away from natural causes on September 20, 2007 at his home in Van Nuys, CA at the age of 84.