Podcast: Show 109 - Smoke and Bopple Sauce

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The Big Band and Swing Podcast - Smoke and Bopple Sauce - Show 109 - 

Features vintage music from The Dinning Sisters, Buddy Morrow, Les Brown and Duke Ellington.  We also hear an Esso ad that appeared in movie theaters in 1938.

* All music in this podcast are Creative Commons.  Artists are credited within the podcast.

Listen to: Smoke and Bopple Sauce (Show 109)

Listen to more episodes of The Big Band and Swing Podcast at: BigBandPodcast.com

Henry Busse

Picture of Henry Busse

Henry Busse was a trumpet player whose career peaked just before the Swing Era officially began but still managed to remain quite popular into the 1940's.  

In 1917, Busse joined the Frisco "Jass" Band and then went on to form his own Busse's Buzzards.  In 1918, Busse joined up with Paul Whiteman's band as a co-leader.  Paul Whiteman eventually went on to become the sole leader of the band partly due to Whiteman's charisma, but also due to the fact that Busse was still learning to master the English language.  Henry still had a very strong German accent in those years, and post-World War I America wasn't the place to have a strong German accent.

He played with Whiteman for ten years and helped the band become one of the most popular dance orchestras throughout the 1920's.  It was such a talented band that also included both Dorsey Brothers and Bing Crosby.

In 1928, after mastering the English language and becoming more confident in the spotlight, Busse formed the "Henry Busse and the Shuffle Rhythm Band" which later became known as "The Henry Busse Orchestra".  This group was more of a sweet dance band than a jazz band and enjoyed some pretty good success in the 1930's and '40s.

You can hear the trumpet playing and shuffle rhythms of Henry Busse and his band right here on Swing City radio.  

Watch: Henry Busse and His Orchestra from 1940

Soundie: "Take The 'A' Train"

Picture of The Delta Rhythm Boys

Today's Soundie is "Take The 'A' Train" and features the wonderful harmonies of The Delta Rhythm Boys.  This was filmed in 1942 and is a fantastic rendition of the Duke Ellington classic.

Enjoy!

Watch: "Take The 'A' Train by The Delta Rhythm Boys

Podcast: Show 108 - Tea for Two but Coffee for Me

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The Big Band and Swing Podcast - Tea for Two but Coffee for Me - Show 108 - 

Features recordings by Jimmy Mundy, Gene Krupa, Hal McIntyre and more.  We also listen to a Snader Telescription and an old ad for None Such Coffee.

* All music in this podcast are Creative Commons.  Artists are credited within the podcast.

Listen to: Tea for Two but Coffee for Me (Show 108)

Listen to more episodes of The Big Band and Swing Podcast at: BigBandPodcast.com

Kay Starr

Picture of Kay Starr

Kay Starr started her singing career at an early age.  When she was just 7 years old she won a bunch of talent contests held by a Dallas radio station. As a result, she was given a weekly 15-minute radio show where she sang country and pop tune accompanied by a piano.

At the age of 15, while living in Memphis, she was heard on the radio by Joe Venturi who needed a female vocalist for his Orchestra.  While performing with his band, Starr's parents insisted a midnight curfew for their daughter.

Word got around about Starr's talent and by 1939 she had recorded some sides with Bob Crosby and Glenn Miller.  She didn't really fit into Miller's band well.  She was hired as a "fill-in" for Marion Hutton who was dealing with some health issues at the time.  Starr can be heard on the Miller tunes "Baby Me" and "Love with a Capital You".  Overall, the key that Miller's band played in, didn't mesh well with Kay's vocal range.

Starr went on to finish high school and then moved on to Wingy Manone's band in 1943.  She also began to record as a soloist at that time as well.  Starr would record with some of the bigger names of the 1940's.

Watch: Kay Starr sing "Momma Goes Where Papa Goes" from 1950

Kay had a fantastic solo career!  She had many hits and appeared on the Pop, Country and Jazz top selling charts.  She remained active in music all the way up to 2016.

You can hear many of Kay Starr's big band era songs right here on Swing City Radio.

Soundie: Eager Beaver

Picture of Stan Kenton and His Orchestra

Today's Soundie is "Eager Beaver" by Stan Kenton and His Orchestra.  This was filmed on a stage set in 1945 and also features the dancing of Jean Ivory (Pictured Below).

I've always enjoyed watching Stan at work.  His passion for the music and his musical leadership really comes through on film. Plus, it's also great to see Ray Wetzel, Freddie Zito, Boots Mussulli and the other boys of Kenton's talented band in action. Enjoy!

Watch: "Eager Beaver" by Stan Kenton from 1945

Picture of Jean Ivory



Podcast: Show 107 - White Rain Smiles

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The Big Band and Swing Podcast - White Rain Smiles - Show 107 - 

Features vintage music from the Archives of Old Time Radio including tracks by Bill Heathcock, Charlie Barnet and Eugenie Baird.  We also learn the secret behind getting your hair to appear "Sunshine Bright".

* All music in this podcast are Creative Commons.  Artists are credited within the podcast.

Listen to: White Rain Smiles (Show 107)

Listen to more episodes of The Big Band and Swing Podcast at: BigBandPodcast.com

Playlist: The Treasury Star Parade

Picture of The Treasury Star Parade

Over the span of the last two weeks I have been listening to a lot of The Treasury Star Parade.  And of course, I spent much of that time cutting and cleaning up tracks so I can play them for you on Swing City Radio.  Very good Swingin' stuff from 1942 and 1943!

You can look forward to hearing some vintage performances by: Abe Lyman, Bob Crosby, Bobby Sherwood, Duke Ellington, Jan Garber, Kay Kyser, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Kaye, Tommy Dorsey, Vaughn Monroe and more. 

About the Show:
The Treasury Star Parade was sponsored by the United States Treasury Department during World War II and featured stars from the music industry and Hollywood. The show encouraged listeners to purchase War Bonds to help finance the war effort.  The shows ran 15 minutes and usually consisted of a musical act or some sort of play featuring Hollywood stars.  

The Treasury Star Parade was the predecessor to "Guest Star", a similar show also sponsored by the Treasury Department.

Keep an ear out for these great tracks.  They have been added into the general song rotation on Swing City Radio.

Enjoy!

Jam from "Syncopation"

Picture of All-American Dance Band

Today's clip is from a 1942 film called "Syncopation" and it features some very familiar faces.  The film itself received mixed reviews and didn't do too well at the Box Office, but it does serve as an archive for some great music.

Prior to the making of the film, RKO held a contest for the readers of "The Saturday Evening Post" to vote on the musicians to make up the All-American Dance Band that were to be featured in the film.  The readers chose: Alvino Rey, Joe Venuti, Charlie Barnet, Benny Goodman, Gene Krupa, Harry James and Jack Jenney.  Vocalist, Connee Boswell was also chosen but unfortunately doesn't appear in this clip.  She was featured in another part of the movie.

This scene appears at the end of the film and is just an absolute "SCORCHER".  Enjoy!

Watch this clip of the "All-American Dance Band" from the movie "Syncopation"

Syncopation movie poster



Podcast: Show 106 - Apple Tree Suite

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The Big Band and Swing Podcast - Apple Tree Suite - Show 106 - 

Features songs by Bing Crosby, Doris Day, Kay Kyser and more.  That famous Apple Tree we heard so much about in the 1940's takes center stage.

* All music in this podcast are Creative Commons.  Artists are credited within the podcast.

Listen to: Apple Tree Suite (Show 106)

Listen to more episodes of The Big Band and Swing Podcast at: BigBandPodcast.com

Abe Lyman

Picture of Abe Lyman and His Orchestra

Abe Lyman learned drumming very young and by the age of 14 he was already playing in a Chicago café. Lyman left Chicago for the West Coast and by 1919 he was regularly playing with two other notable future big band leaders, Henry Halstead and Gus Arnheim, in California.

1919 was also the year Abe formed his first band and it became quite a draw.  By 1922 his band was appearing on the radio.  His orchestra was broadcasting remotes on KOG from The Ambassador Hotel.

A year later Lyman signed with the Brunswick Records.  Over the course of the next decade or so, Lyman became one of the labels leading orchestras. In the mid 1930's spent a short time recording for Decca Records and then found a home with Victor Records where he recorded for their Bluebird Label.

Picture of Abe Lyman

Something I didn't know about Abe Lyman until posting this article was the fact that he recorded a number of soundtracks for the Merrie Melodies cartoon series. 

In 1947, at the age of 50, Lyman retired from the music business and went into restaurant management.  He and his band will always be remembered for helping the West Coast of the United States fall in love with the Big Bands.  He made so many recordings, appeared in films and provided the music for numerous radio shows, including Your Hit Parade.

Watch: Abe Lyman perform "Varsity Drag" in 1927

You can hear the music of Abe Lyman right here on Swing City Radio.

Playlist: Songs from The Alan Young Show

Picture of Bea Wain with Alan Young

In the mid-1940's Alan Young had a very successful radio show that contained some pretty good comedy.  The show also featured some great musical performances. Recently added to the Swing City Radio playlist is a bunch of those tracks, including songs from Diane Courtney, Four Chicks and Chuck, The Tune Twisters and a vocal group called The Smart Set.  Very good stuff.  Bea Wain starred on the first season of the show as a regular singing guest, but I'm yet to find any recordings that are in good enough condition to fix up and play on the air. 

I was also able to isolate and clean up a handful of old commercials from the show by brands like Ipana Toothpaste, Minute Rub and Vitalis Hair Tonic.  I'll be featuring those on "After Dark".

As far as The Alan Young Show itself. Young had a fascinating career in entertainment that lasted nearly 70 years.  He is most known for his work on "The Mister Ed Show" but also had an extensive list of voice over work to his credit.  He also appeared in many movies, had a very nice list of television appearances and, of course, had some great shows on radio.

Be sure to keep an ear out for these tracks on Swing City Radio.

Picture of Diane Courtney Picture of Four Chicks and Chuck




Podcast: Show 105 - Your Navy Show and Jig Time

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The Big Band and Swing Podcast - Your Navy Show and Jig Time - Show 105 - 

Features vintage recordings by Woody Herman, Noble Sissle, Ella Fitzgerald and Tommy Dorsey. We also learn a little bit about an AFRS program called "Your Navy Show".

* All music in this podcast are Creative Commons.  Artists are credited within the podcast.

Listen to: Your Navy Show and Jig Time (Show 105)

Listen to more episodes of The Big Band and Swing Podcast at: BigBandPodcast.com

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