Happy Halloween


Swing City Radio wants to wish our listening audience a Happy Halloween.  Have fun and stay safe!

I can't believe that tomorrow is going to be November already!  This year is just flying by.

Swing City Radio: Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites from the 1930's, 40's and Today! - Broadcasting Online from King of Prussia, PA.



Rosie the Riveter


I stumbled upon this quick, but very informative, video that focuses on Rosie the Riveter.  Enjoy!



Swing City Radio: Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites from the 1930's, 40's and Today! - Broadcasting Online from King of Prussia, PA.


The Speakeasy Three

The Speakeasy Three

Based in Brighton, England, The Speakeasy Three does a great version of Cab Calloway's "Minnie the Moocher." They released their single early this year and I included a promo video below.

I tried to find out more about the trio but only found their Facebook Page.  Here's the highlights from the About Section of their fan page:

Three Bad-Ass Babes Singing Their Little Hearts Out!

Ladies and Gentlemen! Prepare to swing, sway, sizzle and swoon! The Speakeasy Three are rolling out their show-stopping, room-swinging, after dark agenda for your delight.

Influences:
Influences on the sound, style and personality of the group include The Andrews Sisters, Billie Holiday, Etta James, Josephine Baker, Marilyn Monroe, Marlene Dietrich, Edith Piaf...

Like I said, not much info, but they do a good version of the song and have a good sound to them.  Check them out.



You can hear "The Speakeasy Three" on Swing City Radio's - Modern Swing rotation.

Swing City Radio: Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites from the 1930's, 40's and Today! - Broadcasting Online from King of Prussia, PA.

Recommended: (Affiliate Links)

The Speakeasy Three The Speakeasy Three The Speakeasy Three

Claude Thornhill

Claude Thornhill

Claude Thornhill (1908–1965) was the leader of the Claude Thornhill Orchestra and a talented pianist, arranger and composer. He penned the standards "Snowfall" and "I Wish I Had You".

Claude was recognized as an extraordinary talent from early on and by his mid-teens, along with Danny Polo, he was already in the scene touring. The early part of his career is linked with Artie Shaw.  Thornhill and Shaw started their professional careers together at the Golden Pheasant in Cleveland, Ohio, with the Austin Wylie Orchestra. They later went to New York together in 1931.  By the mid 1930's he was playing with big names like Glenn Miller, Paul Whiteman, Benny Goodman, Ray Noble, and Billie Holiday.

In 1939 he founded the Claude Thornhill Orchestra. Danny Polo, a musician he played with in his younger years, was his lead clarinet player. Although the Thornhill band was a sophisticated dance band, it became known for its superior jazz musicians.  Thornhill encouraged the musicians to develop cool-sounding tones. This approach and sound later influenced Miles Davis's Birth of the Cool which was modeled in part on Thornhill's sound and unconventional instrumentation.

The band's most successful records were "Snowfall", "A Sunday Kind of Love", and "Love for Love".

Thornhill was playing at the Paramount Theater in New York for $10,000 a week in 1942 (that was a boatload of money in 1942!) when he decided to enlist in the U.S. Navy. As chief musician with the Navy, he performed shows across the Pacific.

In 1946, he was discharged from the Navy and reunited his ensemble. Danny Polo and Gerry Mulligan returned with new members, Red Rodney and Lee Konitz, which provided a new energy that took them through the next 10 years or so. In the mid 1950's, Thornhill was briefly Tony Bennett's musical director.

Thornhill died of a heart attack in New Jersey, at the age of 56.

You can hear Claude Thornhill's music on Swing City Radio.

Swing City Radio: Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites from the 1930's, 40's and Today! - Broadcasting Online from King of Prussia, PA.

Swing City Radio's: Live at 5


Every weekday at around 5 pm we will be playing an old live radio remote featuring an icon from the Big Band era. These remotes were aired by the top stations of the day and the content is amazing. Most Big Band and Swing fans should find these both interesting and entertaining.

Please keep in mind, some of the recordings featured on the show are almost 100 years old. Time has been spent trying to clean up some the audio, but the quality at times, on some of these recordings can be a little sketchy.  There may be some audio garbles, a brief volume drop or two and some pops, but they shouldn't take away from the enjoyment of the recording.  That being said, the content of these shows are classic, so if you need to adjust your volume a bit, I hope you'll find that it's worth it.

You'll hear a different remote each day featuring artists such as: Benny Goodman, Count Basie, Glenn Miller, Artie Shaw and Louis Armstrong just name a few.

I hope you tune into Swing City Radio's "Live at 5!" I think you'll really enjoy it.

Swing City Radio: Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites from the 1930's, 40's and Today! - Broadcasting Online from King of Prussia, PA.



The Modern Block

Picture of Modern Block Logo

Every weekday at 3pm and 3am, Swing City Radio will feature a 30 minute block of Modern Swing Songs.

So what do I mean when I say Modern Swing?  Well, we'll be playing Artists, Bands and Songs that are classified as Swing Revival, Retro Swing and Vintage Jazz.  I'm not big on trying to put everything in a category so I'm just sticking with Modern Swing.  When you get down to it, we are going play some great songs, from some talented artists that were released much more recently than the 1940's.

Some of the artists you'll hear are Squirrel Nut Zippers, Cherry Poppin' Daddies, The Glenn Crytzer Orchestra, Swingadelic, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, The Brian Setzer Orchestra and many more.

We will also be sprinkling modern tracks throughout the day as part of our normal programming.  Hope you enjoy.

Swing City Radio: Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites from the 1930's, 40's and Today! - Broadcasting Online from King of Prussia, PA.

Soundies on our Youtube

Soundies

Just wanted to let you all know that we are putting together a very nice collection of Soundies on our Youtube Channel.  Decades before MTV, these were the "music videos" of the day.  They were short films featuring our favorite Big Band and Swing artists.  I've included this snippet from Wikipedia about Soundies because they covered it quite well:

"Soundies were short musical films, produced between 1940 and 1947, each containing a song, dance, and/or band or orchestral number. Produced professionally on 35mm black-and-white film, like theatrical motion pictures, they were printed in the more portable and economical 16mm gauge.

The films were shown in a coin-operated "movie jukebox" called the Panoram, manufactured by the Mills Novelty Company of Chicago. Each Panoram housed a 16mm RCA film projector, with eight Soundies films threaded in an endless-loop arrangement. A system of mirrors flashed the image from the lower half of the cabinet onto a front-facing screen in the top half. Each film cost 10 cents to play, and there was no choice of song; the patron saw whatever film was next in the queue. Panorams could be found in public amusement centers, nightclubs, taverns, restaurants, and factory lounges, and the films were changed weekly. The completed Soundies were generally made available within a few weeks of their filming, by the Soundies Distributing Corporation of America."

So now that you know a little more about Soundies check them out on our Youtube Channel.  I've included a sample below.  Enjoy!



Swing City Radio: Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites from the 1930's, 40's and Today! - Broadcasting Online from King of Prussia, PA.


Swing Is Now OUR Thing!

Swing City Radio Logo

We are proud to announce that on October 15, 2019 we have officially changed our radio station to a total Big Band and Swing format.  Our primary focus will be playing your favorites from the 1930's and 40's but we will also be mixing in Swing Roots from the 1920's, some Dixieland, some Ragtime, a little Bebop as well as playing Swing music from today.

I'd like to personally thank our listeners of Theme City Radio and I hope you stick around to give our new format a try.  My heart has always pointed towards a radio station with a Big Band/Swing format and I'm finally listening to it. :)

We are VERY excited to "Bring the Swing" here on Swing City Radio!  Please, bear with us over the next week or so as we change all of our branding, expand our Big Band and Swing playlists, create articles and content for our website and Youtube Channel and develop original programming.

Swing City Radio continues to broadcast Big Band and Swing Music from King of Prussia, Pennsylvania.

Listening To Swing City Radio on iTunes

iTunes Logo

Since the station launch, I've had some listeners ask me how they can listen to Swing City Radio on iTunes.  Well, iTunes Radio has closed off their directory to new stations, but there is still a way to listen to Swing City Radio on iTunes.  The video below shows how you can add the station.  It's a very easy process and the video walks you through every step.

Our station stream is: http://streaming.live365.com/a03438


Swing City Radio - Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites!

Listening to Swing City Radio on iTunes: The video below shows how you can add the station. It's a very easy process and the video walks you through every step. Swing City Radio - Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites!

Glenn Miller

Glenn Miller Album Cover

I LOVE Glenn Miller.  There are many big bands that I truly enjoy listening to but for some reason, Miller has always been my favorite.  If I could, I would make a station that just played Glenn's music 24/7 and I'm sure it would have a following. :)

For those of you that are new to big band music, here is a brief, factual synopsis of Glenn Miller's career provided by Wikipedia:

Glenn Miller (1904–1944) was a trombonist, arranger, composer, and bandleader in the swing era. He was the best-selling recording artist from 1939 to 1942, leading one of the best-known big bands. 

Miller's recordings include "In the Mood", "Moonlight Serenade", "Pennsylvania 6-5000", "Chattanooga Choo Choo", "A String of Pearls", "At Last", "(I've Got a Gal In) Kalamazoo", "American Patrol", "Tuxedo Junction", "Elmer's Tune", "Little Brown Jug" and many, many more. In just four years Glenn Miller scored 16 number-one records and 69 top ten hits.  That's more than Elvis Presley (38 top 10s) and the Beatles (33 top 10s) did in their careers.

While he was traveling to entertain U.S. troops in France during World War II, Miller's aircraft disappeared in bad weather over the English Channel.  Glenn Miller died at the young age of 40!

All these years after Glenn's death, the band still continues to tour.  Nick Hilscher, now leads the band and he has done a fantastic job keeping the "Miller Sound" alive and well. Believe it or not, they play over 300 dates a year! I personally had a chance to see them perform in the summer of 2019 and was totally blown away.

Glenn Miller can be heard on our shows Swing City: After Dark and The Saturday Night Swing.  We play all of his hits, live recordings and dig deep into his vast catalog as well.

Swing City Radio: Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites from the 1930's, 40's and Today! - Broadcasting Online from King of Prussia, PA.

Fletcher Henderson

Fletcher Henderson

Fletcher Henderson (1897–1952) was an pianist, bandleader, arranger and composer. He was arguably one of the most important artists in the development of big band and swing music. Henderson's influence was huge. He helped bridge the gap between the Dixieland era and the Swing era. 

In 1924, a 23 year old Louis Armstrong joined the band. Quickly after that the band became known as the best African-American band in New York. Although Armstrong played in the band for only a year, his influence on the band and the big band genre can not be ignored.

Armstrong wasn't the only big name to play in Henderson's band. The Fletcher Henderson Orchestra was filled with incredible talent, including, of course, Fletcher himself. Names that most big band fans know and love such as Coleman Hawkins, Henry "Red" Allen, Benny Carter, Doc Cheatham, Roy Eldridge and many more.

In addition to arrangements for his band, Henderson wrote arrangements for Teddy Hill, Isham Jones and most importantly, Benny Goodman

In 1935, Goodman's Orchestra was selected as a house band for the NBC radio program Let's Dance. Since Goodman needed new songs every week for the show, he began to purchase some from Henderson. Many of Goodman's hits were played by Henderson and his own band in the 1920's and early 1930's.

In 1939, Henderson disbanded his band and joined up with Benny Goodman's band. He served as pianist and arranger and staff arranger. 

He re-formed bands of his own a few times in the 1940's but Henderson suffered a stroke in 1950.  Fletcher survived the stoke but the resulting partial paralysis ended his days as a pianist. In 1952, Henderson sadly passed away at the age of 55. 

You can hear plenty of Fletcher Henderson's songs on our shows Swing City: After Dark and The Saturday Night Swing including the songs: Sugar Foot Stomp, My Pretty Girl, Money Blues and many others.

Swing City Radio: Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites from the 1930's, 40's and Today! - Broadcasting Online from King of Prussia, PA.

Benny Goodman's 1938 Carnegie Hall Concert

Benny Goodman's 1938 Carnegie Hall Concert

In late 1937, Benny Goodman's publicist suggested that Goodman and his band play Carnegie Hall in New York City. The sold-out concert was held on the evening of January 16, 1938. It is regarded as one of the most significant concerts in jazz history.  Jazz had finally been accepted by mainstream audiences. 

Recordings of the concert were made. In 1950, Goodman's sister-in-law found the recordings in Benny's apartment and brought them to Benny's attention. Goodman took the newly discovered recording to Columbia, and a selection was issued on LP as "The Famous 1938 Carnegie Hall Jazz Concert." It's been re-released many times over the years.

You can hear many selections from this album on Swing City Radio. 

Swing City Radio: Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites from the 1930's, 40's and Today! - Broadcasting Online from King of Prussia, PA.

Tex Beneke

Tex Beneke

Tex Beneke (1914 Р2000) was a saxophonist, singer, and bandleader. His career is associated a lot with Glenn Miller and other musicians and singers who worked with Miller. His personal band is also associated with the careers of Eydie Gorm̩ and Henry Mancini. It's Tex we hear soloing on Glenn Miller Orchestra's song "In The Mood" and it's his vocals we hear on Miller's recording of "Chattanooga Choo Choo".

Beneke started playing saxophone when he was nine, going from soprano to alto to tenor saxophones and then staying with the latter. His first professional work was with bandleader Ben Young in 1935, but it was when he joined the Glenn Miller Orchestra three years later that his career took off. Glenn Miller immediately made Beneke his primary tenor sax soloist and Beneke played all but a few of the tenor solos on all of the records and personal appearances made by the Glenn Miller Orchestra until it disbanded in 1942.

Tex led two bands in the navy and kept in touch with Glenn Miller while they were both serving in the military.  Beneke made it clear that he wanted to come back to Miller after the war and learn more about leading a band before being leading his own band. That never happened due to Miller's death overseas.

By 1945, Beneke felt ready to lead his own orchestra and you can hear his music on Swing City: After Dark and The Saturday Night Swing.  Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop, Give Me Five Minutes More and A Girl in Calico are just a few Tex Beneke songs you can hear on our station.

Swing City Radio: Playing Your Big Band and Swing Music Favorites from the 1930's, 40's and Today! - Broadcasting Online from King of Prussia, PA.

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