1910s . 1920s in jazz . 1930s

Ray Miller Orchestra
King & Carter Jazzing Orchestra, Houston, Texas, 1921

The period from the end of the First World War until the start of the Depression in 1929 is known as the "Jazz Age". Jazz had become popular music in America, although older generations considered the music immoral and threatening to cultural values.[1] Dances such as the Charleston and the Black Bottom were very popular during the period, and jazz bands typically consisted of seven to twelve musicians. Important orchestras in New York were led by Fletcher Henderson, Paul Whiteman and Duke Ellington. Many New Orleans jazzmen had moved to Chicago during the late 1910s in search of employment; among others, the New Orleans Rhythm Kings, King Oliver's Creole Jazz Band and Jelly Roll Morton recorded in the city. However, Chicago's importance as a center of jazz music started to diminish toward the end of the 1920s in favor of New York.[2]

In the early years of jazz, record companies were often eager to decide what songs were to be recorded by their artists. Popular numbers in the 1920s were pop hits such as "Sweet Georgia Brown", "Dinah" and "Bye Bye Blackbird". The first jazz artist to be given some liberty in choosing his material was Louis Armstrong, whose band helped popularize many of the early standards in the 1920s and 1930s.[3]

Some compositions written by jazz artists have endured as standards, including Fats Waller's "Honeysuckle Rose" and "Ain't Misbehavin'". The most recorded 1920s standard is Hoagy Carmichael and Mitchell Parish's "Stardust".[4] Several songs written by Broadway composers in the 1920s have become standards, such as George and Ira Gershwin's "The Man I Love" (1924), Irving Berlin's "Blue Skies" (1927) and Cole Porter's "What Is This Thing Called Love?" (1929). However, it was not until the 1930s that musicians became comfortable with the harmonic and melodic sophistication of Broadway tunes and started including them regularly in their repertoire.

1920

Main article: 1920 in jazz

In 1920, the jazz age was underway and was indirectly fueled by prohibition of alcohol.[5] In Chicago, the jazz scene was developing rapidly, aided by the immigration of over 40 prominent New Orleans jazzmen to the city, continuous throughout much of the 1920s, including The New Orleans Rhythm Kings who began playing at Friar's Inn.[5] However, in 1920, the cabaret business began in New York City and the growing number of speakeasies developing in the cellars of New York City provided many aspiring jazz musicians with new venues which gradually saw many musicians who had moved to Chicago ending up in on the east coast.[5] Classic Blues became very prominent from 1920 after Mamie Smith recorded Crazy Blues and grew in popularity along with jazz.[5]

In 1920, Paul Whiteman and his band recorded "Whispering" in New York City, in a subgenre known as symphonic jazz. Meanwhile, in New York City Adrian Rollini began playing bass saxophone with the California Ramblers and would later in the decade play with Bix Beiderbecke.[5] Duke Ellington had developed in a successful band leader and Louis Armstrong began to amaze audiences with New Orleans Jazz.[5]

1921

Main article: 1921 in jazz

Standards

1922

Main article: 1922 in jazz

Cover of a 1922 edition of F. Scott Fitzgerald's book Tales of the Jazz Age

In 1922, Chicago and New York City were becoming the most important centres for jazz, and jazz was becoming very profitable for jazz managers such as Paul Whiteman who by 1922 managed some 28 different jazz ensembles on the East Coast, earning more than $1 million in 1922.[7] Yet as a form of music it was still not appreciated by many critics, including Anne Faulkner, who passed off jazz as "a destructive dissonance," asking if the music "put the sin in syncopation"and Henry van Dyke who described jazz as "an unmitigated cacophony, a species of music invented by demons for the torture of imbeciles."[8]

Chicago in 1922 in particular was attracting bands such as Joe "King" Oliver's Creole Jazz Band at the Lincoln Gardens, joined by Louis Armstrong on 8 August 1922 and the Austin High Gang featuring Frank Teschemacher (clarinet), Jimmy McPartland (cornet), Richard McPartland (guitar and banjo) and Lawrence "Bud" Freeman (sax) who began playing at the Friar's Inn in Chicago.[7] Meanwhile, on the New York scene, Duke Ellington arrived in New York City with Sonny Greer and banjo player Elmer Snowden and met his idol James P. Johnson, Fats Waller who had begun to make a name for himself with his piano rolls and Willie "The Lion" Smith.[7]Coleman Hawkins, already well noted for his high level of profiency joined Mamie Smith's Jazz Hounds and were later hired in New York by Fletcher Henderson.[7]

Jazz began to emerge in the Soviet Union with the "First Eccentric Orchestra of the Russian Federated Socialist Republic – Valentin Parnakh's Jazz Band ".

1923

Main article: 1923 in jazz

Standard

1924

Main article: 1924 in jazz

In 1924, the improvised solo had become an integral part of most jazz performances[16] Jazz was becoming increasingly popular in New Orleans, Kansas City, Chicago and New York City and 1924 was something of a benchmark of jazz being seen as a serious musical form.[17][18] John Alden Carpenter made a statement insisting that jazz was now 'our contemporary popular music',[19] and Irving Berlin made a statement that jazz was the "rhythmic beat of our everyday lives," and the music's "swiftness is interpretive of our verve and speed". Leopold Stokowski, the conductor of the Philadelphia Orchestra in 1924, publicly embraced jazz as a musical art form and delivered praise to various jazz musicians.[20] In 1924, George Gershwin wrote Rhapsody in Blue, widely regarded as one of the finest compositions of the 20th century.[21]

Black jazz entrepreneur and producer Clarence Williams successfully recorded groups in the New Orleans area, among them Sidney Bechet and Louis Armstrong.[16] Williams, like Armstrong soon moved from New Orleans and opened a record store in Chicago. In Chicago, Earl Hines formed a group and incidentally inhabited the neighboring apartment to Armstrong while he was in Chicago.[22] Also in Chicago, trumpeter Tommy Ladnier begins playing in Joe Oliver's band. Meanwhile, Bechet soon moved to New England with Ellington during the summer of 1924, playing dances and later New York City.

In 1924, in jazz, ensembles in the Kansas City area began play a style with a four even beat ground beat as opposed to a New Orleans two beat ground beat behind a 4/4 melody.[22] Charlie Parker grew up in Kansas City listening to this style of jazz.

In 1924, Django Reinhardt became a guitarist and began playing the clubs of Paris.[22] Noted Classic Blues singer Bessie Smith began to achieve major fame.[22]

In October 1924, Louis Armstrong joined Fletcher Henderson's band in New York City upon his wife's insistence. They began performing at the Roseland Ballroom on 51st street and Broadway in Manhattan.[22] His new style of jazz playing greatly influenced the style of other New York musicians such as Coleman Hawkins and Duke Ellington.[23] Ellington and his Washingtonians performed at the Hollywood Club on 49th street and Broadway, while Bix Beiderbecke and the Wolverines, renamed Personality Kids performed at the Cinderella Ballroom on 41st street and Broadway. On 5 December 1924, a 17-year-old Jimmy McPartland replaced Beiderbecke in the Wolverines (Personality Kids) band and violinist Dave Harmon joins.[24]

1925

Main article: 1925 in jazz

Standards

1926

Main article: 1926 in jazz

Standards

Caucasian man in his thirties smiling and looking to the camera. He has a round face, full lips and large dark eyes, and his short dark hair is combed to the side. He is wearing a dark jacket, a white shirt and a black tie with white dots.
Cole Porter was one of the few Tin Pan Alley songwriters to write both lyrics and music for his songs.[42] His standards include "What Is This Thing Called Love?" (1929), "Love for Sale" (1930) and "Night and Day" (1932).

1927

Main article: 1927 in jazz

Standards

1928

Main article: 1928 in jazz

Standards

1929

Main article: 1929 in jazz

Standards

References

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Bibliography