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

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The Original Charleston

The Original Charleston

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Rhythms of the Roaring Twenties

Josephine Baker - she of the famous banana skin costumes! - and many more famous musicians of the twenties in music for dancing and smooching away the evening, whether it's at the cabaret, or at home by the fireside!

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The Original Charleston
Rhythms of the Roaring Twenties

Josephine Baker - she of the famous banana skin costumes! - and many more famous musicians of the twenties in music for dancing and smooching away the evening, whether it's at the cabaret, or at home by the fireside! Vintage recordings, lovingly restored.

1 Somebody Stole My Gal Ted Weems and His Orchestra
2 Charleston Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra
3 Fascinating Rhythm Fred and Adele Astaire
4 Who? Josephine Baker
5 Swanee Al Jolson
6 When My Baby Smiles At Me Ted Lewis and His Orchestra
7 Black Bottom Stomp Jelly Roll Morton and His Red Hot Peppers
8 Dardanella Ben Selvin, Violin, and His Orchestra
9 If You Knew Susie Eddie Cantor
10 Some of These Days Sophie Tucker
11 Yes, We Have No Bananas Billy Jones and Orchestra
12 Sweet Georgia Brown Ben Bernie, Violin, and His Hotel Roosevelt Orchestra
13 I'd Rather Charleston Fred and Adele Astaire
14 Honey Rudy Vallee and His Connecticut Yankees
15 That Certain Feeling Josephine Baker
16 Nola Carl Fenton and His Orchestra
17 Wabash Blues Isham Jones and His Orchestra
18 I'm Coming, Virginia Bix Beiderbecke with Frankie Trumbauer and His
Orchestra
19 Do It Again! Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra
20 Kitten on the Keys Zez Confrey and His Orchestra
21 That's No Bargain Red Nichols and His Five Pennies

Cover image: Josephine Baker (1906-1975) dancing the Charleston, poster advertising a show at the Folies Bergère 1923 R. de Valerio (fl.1919-1930) Private Collection The Bridgeman Art Library
Technical restorations of vintage recordings &
this compilation P & C 2007 Classical Communications Ltd

Made in Great Britain

The Original Charleston
Rhythms of the Roaring Twenties

The golden era of music and dance between the two world wars produced names and personalities which live on in the popular consciousness even after several decades have gone by. Will the light of today's TV stars shine so long? Here at The Gift of Music we doubt this, and this makes us more determined to treat great artists like Astaire or Baker with the same respect we always give to the musicians of previous centuries.

There is something special about these vintage recordings: don't forget that they were effectively 'live', since recording techniques of the 1920s allowed no other way. Musicians crowded around a microphone and got it right first time. So we really are hearing these musicians and singers as they really were, and hearing them when they were really concentrating as well! And with a bit of judicious tweaking of the hisses and crackles on these old recordings, we can produce a respectable sound which allows the superb artistry to shine through.

Our cover image features Josephine Baker, an American who took Paris by storm in 1925 in the show at a theatre on the Champs-Elysées which introduced the marvelous Charleston dance to the French. Baker went on to perform many more times in Paris, her almost nude appearances causing quite a stir, and helping to confirm her status as one of the most talked-about stars of her day. We have included two of her most famous songs on this album, 'Who?' and 'That certain feeling'.

Other stars on the album include Ted Weems, famous for introducing Perry Como to the world in the 1930s. Paul Whiteman was one of the greatest musicians of the jazz age, so it's appropriate to have his own rendition of the Charleston. The famous bit of the tune puts in appearance after a minute or so! Jolson, Astaire, Morton, Sophie Tucker: none of these names need introduction here. All make strongly rhythmic music which positively begs the feet to get moving. So we invite you to enjoy these wonderful sounds. An armchair is a good place to start, but I hope that the music will drag you to your feet and onto the dance floor!


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