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Jazz in the 30s and 40s - an oral

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by jenderfazz, Sep 9, 2005.


  1. Well TB. here's another chance for you to help me out. I've got a small oral to make (5 mins or so) on jazz in America in the 1930s and 40s. It's for English class, so I don't need too much technical detail, but more of an overview that can be absorbed by musicians and non-musicians all the same, and that focuses on the impact it had on the US at that time.

    Though I'll probably find a lot of info, I'd just like some suggestions on main topics I should focus on - the main musicians of the time, the main styles, the main fans of the genre. My English class is on the "beat" generation, by the way, so if it can tie in to them at all that would be great. Thanks.
     
  2. Phil Smith

    Phil Smith Mr Sumisu 2 U

    May 30, 2000
    Peoples Republic of Brooklyn
    Creator of: iGigBook for Android/iOS
    1930's - Swing Era
    1940's - Bob Era
     
  3. dlloyd

    dlloyd zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Apr 21, 2004
    Scotland
    Bob??? :D
     
  4. You probably won't be able to watch it in time, but if you are really interested in it, get Jazz - A Film by Ken Burns DVD set. Covers it in some depth, and really really good.
     
  5. dlloyd

    dlloyd zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Apr 21, 2004
    Scotland
    Go down to your library and get a copy of Ken Burns' Jazz. It kind of concentrates on this period.

    You've got jazz in the thirties being all about dancing, with big bands being the thing. Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington and Count Basie.

    Then there was a big change punctuated by the war.

    Jazz became an intellectual endeavour, tritone substitutions and flattened fifths, quintets and quartets, Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie.

    Check this out...

    http://www.outsideshore.com/primer/primer/ms-primer-2.html
     
  6. Folmeister

    Folmeister Knowledge is Good - Emile Faber Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    Tomball, Texas
    It's an important time because Jazz reigns supreme in pop music through the 40s. The popularity of swing drives the war years until the bebop backlash starting in the 1950s. Bebop intentionally moves jazz away from pop culture. It creates a nice vacuum for rock and roll to fill.



    For what it's worth, I am a really big fan of the Bob Era in Jazz. I believe it encompassed the years between the 40s and the 50s. The prime innovator of the period was named, appropriately, Bob. Bob Jazz. He invented a form of Braille jazz that never really took off.
     
  7. Dan Molina

    Dan Molina TalkBass Secular Progressive

    Jul 17, 2002
    Murr Town, California
    It comes on PBS alot too.
     
  8. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    Bzzzzzt! Thanks for playing!

    40's swing
    50's bop
     
  9. Hmmm...5 minutes?

    Get two recordings; one from the 30's and one from the 40's and play them in their entirety. Then look up and say, "Jazz back then was really cool, man!"

    That should pretty much fill up your time. :D
     
  10. dlloyd

    dlloyd zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Apr 21, 2004
    Scotland
    Respectfully... Most of Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker's most famous tunes were recorded in the mid 1940s...

    A Night in Tunisia 1946
    Now's the Time 1945
    Donna Lee 1947
    Scrapple from the Apple 1947

    1950s was more hard bop and cool jazz.
     
  11. Phil Smith

    Phil Smith Mr Sumisu 2 U

    May 30, 2000
    Peoples Republic of Brooklyn
    Creator of: iGigBook for Android/iOS
    Ha ha! Perhaps before you hit the buzzer you should consult the writing of some Jazz historians to get the timeline down.
     
  12. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    If you REALLY want to get into semantics, the mid-late 40's were the roots and beginnings of bop and laying the foundation for the 50's, which became very much the bop era during which Bird and Diz were far from the only guys playing this stuff. Also taking a look at the other big players in bop:

    Thelonius Monk - 1947
    Charles Mingus - 1952
    Buddy Rich - 1952
    Max Roach - 1949
    Bud Powell - 1947

    The above is a list of bop masters with the year of their first recordings (excluding specifically sideman gigs) according to the AMG. Now, logically, one can't really consider the 40's the bop era because it only REALLY started in the mid-40's on wax and up until 47, basically only Bird and Diz were really doing it. Bebop didn't really catch on with other musicians until the very late 40's/early 50s. Can't say I'd really call 3 years out of a decade an "era."

    PS: Out of every bop master listed on the AMG genre description of bop, there wasn't a single other person listed that I haven't already mentioned with a bop album pre-1950.


    EDIT: Sorry, I forgot. BZZZZT.
     
  13. Phil Smith

    Phil Smith Mr Sumisu 2 U

    May 30, 2000
    Peoples Republic of Brooklyn
    Creator of: iGigBook for Android/iOS
    Nonsense...The roots and the beginnings of Bop arise from young big band players such as Dizzy, Charlie Parker and they along with others essentially usher in the new style at the beggining of the 1940's.

    You left out...

    Kenny Clarke - http://www.angelfire.com/mac/keepitlive/drummers/Clarke/clarke.htm
    Jimmy Blanton - http://www.jazzscript.co.uk/life/blantonlife.htm
    Charlie Christian - http://www-music.duke.edu/jazz_archive/artists/christian.charlie/01/biograph2.html
    Coleman Hawkins

    You also left out the fact that there was a recording ban from 1942-1944.


    The BZZZZZT is on you.
     
  14. Phil Smith

    Phil Smith Mr Sumisu 2 U

    May 30, 2000
    Peoples Republic of Brooklyn
    Creator of: iGigBook for Android/iOS
    To the OP...

    There are a number of social developments that are happening during the 1930's and 1940's. You have the depression in the 30's, repeal of prohibition, World War II and the beginnings of the civil rights movement.
     
  15. dlloyd

    dlloyd zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Apr 21, 2004
    Scotland
    Charlie Christian is an obvious case in point, usually cited as one of the pioneers of bebop and having died in 1942.
     
  16. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    Yeah...and all those bebop players seemed to wait at leat 3-6 years after that recording ban to start recording records.

    Look, I'm not saying the roots of bebop aren't in the 40's, because clearly they are. The bebop era -- the height of its popularity, when musicians all over the place were cranking out bebop in their sleep, when bebop was basically pop -- was not in the 40's, because it just hadn't been developed by then. It was developing. Case in point -- the linked sources you gave to Jimmy Blanton, where the only mention of bebop also refers to a recording where the "new language of bebop is being developed..."

    The only thing you've showed me is the other originators of bebop. That's cool, because honestly, I wasn't all that familiar with who played in the rhythm section on really early bop stuff. However, you're still far from proving that this was the bebop era. For instance, the swing era is generally regarded as the 30's, right? Because that's when it's the most popular, when it was at its peak. I don't think I've ever heard of anyone referencing the first 5 years when swing was just starting to come into its own as the swing era, so why are you doing that for bebop?
     
  17. Phil Smith

    Phil Smith Mr Sumisu 2 U

    May 30, 2000
    Peoples Republic of Brooklyn
    Creator of: iGigBook for Android/iOS
    This is irrelevant, you have to look at what's going on during these years, you have to read the historical record and I'm not talking about the internet, you have to get your hands on actual books, written by Jazz historians who were either there or consulted with those that were.

    FYI: LP's were introduced in 1948 by Columbia Records.

    Bepop was not pop and primarily a black phenomena, popular culture was white and defacto segragation was the order of the day. Which means anything created or embraced by black people was for the most part rejected by the more dominant white culture. If the white culture had not bought into swing, which was dance music, it would never have been the pop music of the day.

    Lastly, the top singles in 1946 are by performers with the following names:

    Perry Como
    Frank Sinatra
    Johnny Mercer
    Bing Crosby
    Frankie Carle
    Dinah Shore
    Guy Lombardo
    The Nat King Cole Trio
    Peggy Lee

    Not a bopper in the bunch. :D

    The 40's is the bop era, the 50's introduces a different type of sound as does the 60's as does the 70's, etc. All of these changes are influenced by technology and social trends.
     
  18. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    *sigh* You think I'd learn to NOT bang my head against a brick wall.
     
  19. FenderHotRod

    FenderHotRod

    Sep 1, 2004
    Arkansas
    Um....Yeah I just got of the phone with Miles and um he said to shut the (*&^&*^*0)up :D
    It don't mean a thing if it aint got that swing. before you guys freak out I know it's the Duke and not Miles.
     
  20. Phil Smith

    Phil Smith Mr Sumisu 2 U

    May 30, 2000
    Peoples Republic of Brooklyn
    Creator of: iGigBook for Android/iOS
    I hope if anything it's because you want to make way for information that you are obviously unaware of. :D