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The Gift of Music, Keswick House, Branthwaite Road, Workington, Cumbria, CA14 4ED, United Kingdom.

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Ain't Misbehavin

Ain't Misbehavin

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Songs from the twenties and thirties

Classic love songs by the best singers in town merge with some great dance favourites for more foot-tapping fun and frolics!

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Ain't Misbehavin'
Songs from the twenties and thirties

Classic love songs by the best singers in town merge with some great dance favourites for more foot-tapping fun and frolics!

1 Ain't Misbehavin' Fats Waller
2 Stardust The Mills Brothers
3 Falling in Love Again Marlene Dietrich
4 One Morning in May Al Bowlly
5 I've Got My Love To Keep Me Warm Dick Powell
6 I have Eyes Bing Crosby
7 I'm on a See-Saw Harry Roy
8 This Year's Kisses Alice Faye
9 Love Letters Ambrose
10 I Can't Get Started Bunny Berigan
11 The Continental Lew Stone
12 Begin the Beguine 'Hutch'
13 It's Only a Paper Moon Paul Whiteman
14 This Time It's Real Ella Fitzgerald
15 Somebody Loves Me Bing Crosby
16 I've Got the World on a String Louis Armstrong
17 Marie Tommy Dorsey
18 Let Us Be Sweethearts 'Hutch'
19 Miss Otis Regrets The Mills Brothers
20 Dancing in the Dark Artie Shaw
21 Love in Bloom Bing Crosby
22 Goodnight Sweetheart Al Bowlly

Cover image: 1928 Flapper/Fantasio Mary Evans Picture Library
Concept and programme notes by Martin Moritz
P & C 2005 Classical Communications Ltd
Made in Great Britain

'Tin Pan Alley' was the nickname given to the street in New York where many music publishers worked during the period of 1880 to 1953. In the late 19th century, New York had become the epicentre of song writing and music publishing, and publishers converged on the block of West 28th Street between Broadway and Sixth Avenue in Manhattan. There are several stories as to how the block got its name. One that is often repeated tells of a reporter for the New York Herald who was hired to write about the new business of sheet music publishing in the city. As he walked down 28th Street towards the publishing offices, he heard the dissonant chords and strings of competing pianos through the open windows. The sound, he remarked, sounded like a bunch of tin pans clanging!

The golden age of Tin Pan Alley occurred during the 1920s and 30s. The best-known songs of this period were produced by a small group of composers and lyricists based in New York City. Tin Pan Alley songs were popularised in Broadway musical comedies, the successor to vaudeville (what was known as Music Hall in England), and by popular singers accompanied by dance orchestras.

Important technological changes also occurred during this period, including the rapid spread of radio. The development of more affordable and better quality gramophones made recordings more popular than sheet music in sales, and the introduction of amplification and electric recording led to the development of crooning, the intimate vocal style perfected by such singers as Bing Crosby. By the mid-1920s, almost 100 million records were produced each year in the United States.

The Twenties saw the most creative outpouring of songs of all the years in Tin Pan Alley's history. National optimism was reflected in the popularity of jazz bands and in the number of dance bands that were being recorded in the USA. The entertainment industry was going full tilt, especially with the sales of self-playing pianos and piano rolls. Theatre attendance was at an all-time high with many new musical comedies arriving on Broadway (the 1927-28 season, alone, saw fifty-three produced). However, all this came to an abrupt halt at the end of 1929 with the Wall Street Crash.

By the beginning of the Thirties, radio had become a dominant force for the popular music business, reaching a huge audience that listened to and enjoyed popular music. Talking pictures had arrived and film musicals were starting to proliferate. Films became a highly lucrative source of income for both songwriters and publishers as producers had to buy songs to fill their musicals. Therefore, Hollywood found it was more convenient to buy publishing companies with a large catalogue of popular songs.

Our collection features twenty-two songs from the two remarkable decades that were the 20s and 30s. It is no coincidence that they are romantic ballads and songs because the finest and most enduring songs written during this period were on the theme of love. Many of them have become 'evergreens' and 'standards' and collectively they offer a marvellous souvenir of the golden age of popular music.

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