Playlist Additions: July 2024

Pic of Charlie Barnet

Over the last month or so, I've added over a hundred "new" songs to The Swing City Radio rotation.  Here are some of the highlights to listen for:

Charlie Barnet
These recordings were from two separate performances on One Night Stand.  (Episodes 298 and 543)  The raw audio of these recordings were pretty bad.  I was able to clean them up and they sound much better than they did but still not the best.  Kay Starr handles the vocals on many of these and Barnet and the Boys were on the top of their game.  Great stuff.

Cab Calloway
These tracks were also sourced from a One Night Stand episode.  The performance took place in Jan of 1945, and the beautiful Dotty Saulters takes care of the female lead on some of the tracks.

Jan Savitt
A great performance from Sep of 1945.  Savitt always had a tight, disciplined band with a really good sound - but on this night, they took it up yet another notch.

Listen to: "Caprice XXIV" by Jan Savitt and His Orchestra from Sep of 1945.

Other Artists Added
This playlist addition also contained a wide range of artists including vintage tracks by: The Andrews Sisters, Billy Bishop, The Boswell Sisters, Dick Haymes, Harry Cool, Jesse Stone, Joe Reichman, Louis Prima and Tommy Dorsey.


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 to having 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 joined Wingy Manone's band in 1943.  Later in 1943, Kay moved on to Charlie Barnet's Orchestra where, in my opinion, she did some of her best work.  Barnet's music and style were a perfect match for her voice.  She also began to record as a soloist at that time as well.  Starr would go on to record with some of the bigger names of the 1940's and 50's.

Listen to: Kay Starr sing "The Best Things In Life Are Free" from Dec of 1947.

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.

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