The sixth of RKO's Fred Astaire -Ginger Rogers pairings of the 1930s, Swing Time starts off with bandleader Astaire getting cold feet on his wedding day. Astaire's bride-to-be Betty Furness will give him a second chance, providing he proves himself responsible enough to earn $25,000. Astaire naturally tries to avoid earning that amount once he falls in love with dance instructor Ginger Rogers. Numerous complications ensue, leading to the "second time's the charm" climax, with Ginger escaping her own wedding to wealthy Georges Metaxa in order to be reunited with Astaire. The film's most indelible image is that of Fred Astaire, immaculately attired in top hat and tails, hopping a freight car–a perfect encapsulation of the film's Depression-era cheekiness. The Jerome Kern-Dorothy Fields score includes such standards-to-be as "Pick Yourself Up," "A Fine Romance," "The Way You Look Tonight," "Never Gonna Dance" and "Bojangles of Harlem."
Oscar Alemán is one of the great unknown talents in jazz history. A brilliant guitarist who sounded very close to Django Reinhardt at times, Alemán was overshadowed in Europe by Reinhardt in the 1930s and spent much of the rest of his career in his native Argentina, remaining well known only in that country. This 1998 double CD from Dave Grisman's Acoustic Disc label has highlights from Alemán's career, including the eight selections he recorded during his three European sessions of 1938-1939, plus music from 1941-1947 and 1951-1954. Although the settings varied (including a sextet with violinist Svend Asmussen, a nonet, and two unaccompanied guitar solos), Alemán's basic swing style stayed the same, retaining its enthusiasm and creativity and remaining unaffected by bop. Sticking throughout to acoustic guitar and taking an occasional good-time vocal, Alemán is heard in peak form. He deserves to be much better known. A definitive two-fer from a major talent.
100 CDs provide you with the most exciting, most beautiful and most swinging recordings from this period. All-Star Swing groups with their most famous recordings. Mit Henry Allen, Roy Eldrige, Ben Webster, Coleman Hawkins, Lester Young, Johnny Hodges, Benny Carter, Fats Waller, Art Tatum, Benny Goodman, Lionel Hampton, Red Norvo, Teddy Wilson, Buck Clayton, Django Reinhardt, Jack Teagarden, Rex Stewart, Chu Berry, Charlie Christian, Louis Armstrong u.a. 100-CD-Box with original recordings.
During the LP era, Django Reinhardt's discography seemed substantial and pleasantly challenging; along came digital reproduction with the emergence of uncommon or previously undiscovered works, and now there are enough Reinhardt albums to confuse even the experienced connoisseur. Perhaps the best way to experience his legacy is to map his career with chronological precision, as several reissue labels have successfully done. If you just want to get a really nice taste of what this wonderful musician sounded like during his early maturity, Indigo's Swing 47 might just be the album for you. It consists of 24 selections recorded in Paris between April and November 1947 and originally issued on the Blue Star and Vogue labels.
Recorded between 2003 and 2007, United We Swing finds an unparalleled array of musical talent that collectively boasts 94 Grammy Awards joining Jazz at Lincoln Center Managing and Artistic Director Wynton Marsalis (a nine-time Grammy Award winner himself) and his Septet. Together, they perform blues-inflected versions of iconic American repertoire and celebrate the red, white, and Blues.