Out of the three performing Pleau brothers, I think Al had the most experience, exposure, and consequently, fame.
Early in his career, Al played a leadership role for the causes he cared about. 1908 was when he seems to have put together Al Pleau’s Minstrels that performed a benefit for the Acadia Hose Company in Newark, NY. In 1912, he was director and musical director of the Western drama, “The Half-Breed” in Le Roy, NY that was to benefit St. Joseph’s Italian Church.
Another benefit that Al participated in was after World War I. On April 29, 1919, a day of entertainment was provided to a number of veterans who fought at Argonne at the country home of Senator James D. Phelan in Saratoga, CA. Al was named the “vaudeville tenor”.
Al must have made many friends in show business. In 1906 he contracted the measles, which affected his vision for a while, making him unable to perform. So in January 1907, a benefit was organized for him as he recuperated, perhaps to make up for his lost income.
Al also had a hand in songwriting and arrangement. I was able to find some songs that he had copyrighted:
- “When I Stroll With You” in 1910
- “Don’t Be Jealous of Old New York” in 1910
- “My Cousin Antone” in 1910
- Sandy McPherson in 1910
- “The Call to the Boys in Blue” in 1918 (by his own Al Pleau Music Co.)
- “Where ‘ja Get It” in 1920
- “Draw” also in 1920
As vaudeville declined, so had the articles about Al’s performances. In 1922 he played Dave Tolliver in “The Trail of the Lonesome Pine” with the Hildebrand Company on stage in Klamath Falls, WA. I suspect that stage acting was the direction Al’s career took, as he was listed as an actor in his 1940 voter registration (he was a Democrat, by the way). For all I know, he may have done radio or even some film roles, but I haven’t found any evidence of that yet.