Songs of the Depression: Boom, Bust & New Deal

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Arwulf Arwulf
Bear Family Records presents an 88-track anthology of what are now termed Depression Era phonograph recordings cut between May 31, 1929, and April 10, 1940. This stretch of time takes in the last few months of the U.S.A.'s already flawed and disintegrating prosperity, the devastating Wall Street crash of October 29, 1929, and the nation's agonizingly gradual economic recovery throughout the 1930s. Musically, this massive compilation maps the mainstream mingling of real jazz with the predominant dance band and pop vocal aesthetic of the decade. Even months before the day when, as visiting Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca put it, the New York Stock Exchange ."..lost ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Arwulf Arwulf
Bear Family Records presents an 88-track anthology of what are now termed Depression Era phonograph recordings cut between May 31, 1929, and April 10, 1940. This stretch of time takes in the last few months of the U.S.A.'s already flawed and disintegrating prosperity, the devastating Wall Street crash of October 29, 1929, and the nation's agonizingly gradual economic recovery throughout the 1930s. Musically, this massive compilation maps the mainstream mingling of real jazz with the predominant dance band and pop vocal aesthetic of the decade. Even months before the day when, as visiting Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca put it, the New York Stock Exchange ."..lost various billions of dollars, a rabble of dead money that slid off into the sea," Tin Pan Alley composers were already fixating upon what was to become the ever more elusive pursuit of happiness by penning an almost alarming number of "happy" songs, such as "Get Happy" and "Happy Days Are Here Again." As the social fabric of a nation came apart at the seams and swiftly began to unravel, a subgenre of melodies with conspicuously comforting and persistently optimistic lyrics filled the air with phrases like "Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams," "Life Is Just a Bowl of Cherries," and "Let's Have Another Cup of Coffee." Sobering responses to the disparity between harsh realities and sugary reassurances included "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?," "Remember My Forgotten Man," "Hallelujah, I'm a Bum," "Cheer Up! Smile! Nertz!" (almost angrily delivered by an exasperated Eddie Cantor), and a remarkably cynical opus entitled "It Must Be Swell to Be Laying Out Dead." With the inauguration of Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1933 and the implementation of his New Deal programs (see Louis Armstrong's "W.P.A."), a series of frustratingly slow-paced improvements inspired monetarily motivated ditties with giddy titles like "We're in the Money," "We're Out of the Red," "What Have We Got to Lose?," "Buy America!," and the quaintly romantic "With Plenty of Money and You," sung to perfection near the end of this collection by the Ink Spots. The Great Depression has inspired a number of fascinating musicological retrospectives; this one belongs among the best of the lot.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/26/1999
  • Label: Bear Family
  • UPC: 790051602925
  • Catalog Number: 16029


Disc 1
  1. 1 Hittin' the Ceiling - Smith Ballew (3:01)
  2. 2 I'm in the Market for You (2:49)
  3. 3 Happy Days Are Here Again (3:18)
  4. 4 Song of the Bayou - Marlow Hardy & His Alabamans (0:29)
  5. 5 Eddie Cantor's Tips on the Stock Market (2:23)
  6. 6 A Cottage for Sale - Hotel Pennsylvania Music (2:46)
  7. 7 Get Happy - Ted Wallace (3:33)
  8. 8 Sweeping the Clouds Away (3:25)
  9. 9 Laughing at Life (2:59)
  10. 10 It's a Great Life (If You Don't Weaken) - Sam Lanin (3:16)
  11. 11 Cheer Up! Good Times Are Comin' - Hotel Pennsylvania Music (2:52)
  12. 12 Cheer Up! Smile! Nertz! - Cantor E. & P. Spitalny's (4:06)
  13. 13 Singing a Vagabond Song - Ted Lewis Orchestra (3:26)
  14. 14 Son of the Sun - Jack Teagarden Orchestra (2:25)
  15. 15 Hallelujah, I'm a Bum (2:33)
  16. 16 Big City Blues (3:01)
  17. 17 There's a Tear for Every Smile in Hollywood - Blue Steele (3:12)
  18. 18 Ten Cents a Dance (3:17)
  19. 19 Cigarettes Cigars (3:07)
  20. 20 Just a Gigolo (2:17)
  21. 21 Love for Sale (3:14)
  22. 22 We Can Live on Love - Smith Ballew (3:10)
Disc 2
  1. 1 There's No Depression in Love - Vincent Rose (2:53)
  2. 2 Now's the Time to Fall in Love - Victor Young (2:55)
  3. 3 I'm an Unemployed Sweetheart (3:22)
  4. 4 I Got Five Dollars - Emil Coleman (2:59)
  5. 5 I Found a Million Dollar Baby (In a Five and Ten Cent Store) - Paul Specht (3:02)
  6. 6 Last Dollar - Eddie Droesch Orchestra (2:59)
  7. 7 Here It Is Monday and I've Still Got a Dollar - Chick Bullock (2:45)
  8. 8 Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams (And Dream Your Troubles Away) (3:08)
  9. 9 Whistling in the Dark - Sam Lanin (3:14)
  10. 10 Dancing in the Dark - Ben Selvin Orchestra (3:07)
  11. 11 Alone Together - Victor Young (3:22)
  12. 12 Life Is Just a Bowl of Cherries - The Mills Brothers (2:34)
  13. 13 (We've Got To) Put That Sun Back in the Sky (3:04)
  14. 14 Shoo the Hoodoo Away - Ambrose Orchestra (3:01)
  15. 15 Whistle and Blow Your Blues Away - Ben Selvin Orchestra (3:26)
  16. 16 Headin' for Better Times - Ted Lewis Orchestra (3:01)
  17. 17 Let's Have Another Cup of Coffee - Enric Madriguera (3:17)
  18. 18 Sittin' on a Rubbish Can - Julia Gerity (2:55)
  19. 19 Underneath the Arches - Henry Hall & BBC Dance Orchestra (3:02)
  20. 20 Brother, Can You Spare a Dime? (3:13)
  21. 21 Remember My Forgotten Man - Freddy Martin (3:05)
  22. 22 It Must Be Swell to Be Laying Out Dead - Alex Bartha (2:59)
Disc 3
  1. 1 Supper Time - Leo Reisman (3:32)
  2. 2 Banking on the Weather - Russ Carlson (2:57)
  3. 3 A Shanty in Old Shanty Town - Gene Kardos (3:02)
  4. 4 (Here We Are) Rolling in Love (3:42)
  5. 5 I'd Rather Be a Beggar With You - C. Bullock's Levee Loungers (3:00)
  6. 6 Here You Come With Love - Freddy Martin (2:52)
  7. 7 Let's Put Out the Lights (And Go to Sleep) (3:11)
  8. 8 The Clouds Will Soon Roll By - Graham Prince Orchestra (3:07)
  9. 9 Rome Wasn't Built in a Day - Abe Lyman (2:47)
  10. 10 If I Ever Get a Job Again - Gene Kardos (3:04)
  11. 11 Them Good Old Times Are Coming Back Again - Ben Selvin Orchestra (2:51)
  12. 12 Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf? - Ben Bernie (4:01)
  13. 13 There's a New Day Coming - Ted Lewis Orchestra (2:58)
  14. 14 Buy America! - Ted Lewis Orchestra (3:08)
  15. 15 Hey! Young Fella (2:53)
  16. 16 The Grass Is Getting Greener - Victor Young (2:41)
  17. 17 (I Went Hunting) And the Big Bad Wolf Was Dead - Ted Fio Rito (3:08)
  18. 18 We're Out of the Red (3:15)
  19. 19 We're in the Money (The Gold Diggers Song) (2:34)
  20. 20 The Road Is Open Again - Dick Powell (2:57)
  21. 21 Let 'Em Eat Cake - Emil Coleman (2:53)
  22. 22 In a One Room Flat - Freddy Martin (2:51)
Disc 4
  1. 1 What Have We Got to Lose? (Hi-Ho-Lack-A-Day) - Phil Harris (3:36)
  2. 2 Stringin' Along on a Shoe String - Henry "Red" Allen (2:47)
  3. 3 When My Ship Comes in (3:05)
  4. 4 If I Had a Million Dollars (2:49)
  5. 5 Our Penthouse on Third Avenue - Gene Kardos (2:54)
  6. 6 Raisin' the Rent - Ramon & Roy Bargy (3:08)
  7. 7 Annie Doesn't Live Here Anymore - Chick Bullock (2:54)
  8. 8 The Boulevard of Broken Dreams - Connie Boswell (3:12)
  9. 9 Now I'm a Lady (Goin' to Town) - Paul Whiteman Orchestra (3:10)
  10. 10 I Gotta Get up and Go to Work - Adrian Rollini & the Gang (2:45)
  11. 11 Gotta Go to Work Again - Ted Wallace (2:38)
  12. 12 Are You Making Any Money? - Chick Bullock (2:55)
  13. 13 Got the Jitters - Ozzie Nelson (2:55)
  14. 14 Rain - Don Bestor (2:55)
  15. 15 With Plenty of Money and You (2:55)
  16. 16 I'm Feeling Like a Million - Teddy Hill (2:41)
  17. 17 Slumming on Park Avenue - Red Norvo (2:41)
  18. 18 Whistle While You Work - Artie Shaw (2:41)
  19. 19 W.P.A. (2:48)
  20. 20 Hey Pop! I Don't Wanna Go to Work - Kay Kyser (2:43)
  21. 21 Dawn of a New Day - Horace Heidt (2:33)
  22. 22 Happy Days Are Here Again - Ben Selvin Orchestra (2:36)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
The Boswell Sisters Track Performer
Bing Crosby Vocals
Annette Hanshaw Vocals
The Mills Brothers Track Performer
Mildred Bailey Vocals
Bunny Berigan Trumpet
Dizzy Gillespie Trumpet
Benny Goodman Clarinet
Glen Gray Alto Saxophone
Al Jolson Vocals
John Kirby String Bass
McKinney's Cotton Pickers Track Performer
Red Norvo Leader, Xylophone
Pee Wee Russell Clarinet
Artie Shaw Clarinet, Leader
Muggsy Spanier Cornet
Charlie Spivak Trumpet
Rex Stewart Cornet
Jack Teagarden Vocals
Joe Venuti Violin
Horace Henderson Piano
Pee Wee Hunt Trombone
Ted Lewis Clarinet, Leader, Alto Saxophone, Vocals
Tony Parenti Clarinet
Tony Pastor Tenor Saxophone, Vocals
Todd Rhodes Piano, Celeste
Adrian Rollini Bass Saxophone, Vibes
Babe Russin Tenor Saxophone
Frankie Trumbauer C-Melody Saxophone
Bert Ambrose Leader
Ray Eberle Alto Saxophone
Ruth Etting Vocals
Freddy Martin Leader, Tenor Saxophone
Don Redman Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Baritone Saxophone
Eddie Cantor Vocals, Voices
The Ink Spots Track Performer
Ambrose Orchestra Track Performer
Emil Coleman Piano
Coleman Hawkins Tenor Saxophone
Russell Procope Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
John Mills Sr. Vocals
Louis Nye Announcer
Red McKenzie Vocals
Bernard Addison Guitar
Sam Allen Piano
Louis Armstrong Trumpet, Vocals
George Arus Trombone
Al Avola Guitar
Bill Beason Drums
Benny Carter Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
Ben Bernie Vocals
Larry Binyon Tenor Saxophone
Rube Bloom Piano
Tony Briglia Drums
George Brunies Trombone
Neil Buckley Vocals
Les Burness Piano
Shad Collins Trumpet
Tony Colucci Guitar
Langston Curl Trumpet
Bill Dillard Trumpet, Vocals
Jimmy Dorsey Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
Larry Gomar Drums
Chris Griffin Trumpet
Joe Hall Piano
Herbie Haymer Tenor Saxophone
Teddy Hill Leader, Tenor Saxophone
Hilton Jefferson Alto Saxophone
Walter Johnson Drums
Stan King Drums
Cliff Leeman Drums
Ella Logan Vocals
John Lucas Drums
Frank Martinez Trumpet
Donald Mills Vocals
Harry Mills Vocals
Herbert Mills Vocals
Chauncey Morehouse Drums
Danny Polo Clarinet
Bill Rank Trombone
Les Robinson Alto Saxophone
Harry Rodgers Trombone
Frank Signorelli Piano
Dicky Wells Trombone
Dave Wilborn Banjo
Harry Babbitt Vocals
Harry Barth Tuba
Sterling Bose Trumpet
Martha Boswell Piano, Vocals
Chick Bullock Vocals
Tony Gerhardi Guitar
Dick McDonough Guitar
Joe Tarto String Bass
Dick Robertson Vocals
Roy Bargy Piano
Al Philburn Trombone
Pete Pumiglio Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
Casa Loma Orchestra Track Performer
Cuba Austin Drums
Benny Bonacio Clarinet
Ramona Davies Piano, Vocals
Pat Davis Tenor Saxophone
Stanley Dennis String Bass
Gene Gifford Guitar
Harry Hoffman Violin
Joe Hostetter Trumpet
Mel Jenssen Violin
Louis Martin Baritone Saxophone
Fulton McGrath Piano
Jimmy Migliore Trumpet
Stew Pletcher Trumpet
Jack Purvis Trumpet
Billy Rauch Trombone
Leo Reisman Violin
Prince Robinson Clarinet, Tenor Saxophone
Sammy Shapiro Violin
Eric Siday Violin
Smith Ballew Vocals
Don Bestor Piano
Sam Browne Vocals
Elmer Feldkamp Vocals
Fran Frey Vocals
Charlie Fuqua Ukulele, Guitar (Tenor)
Libby Holman Track Performer
Gene Kardos Leader
Bill Kenny Tenor (Vocal)
Johnny Marvin Vocals
Joe Morrison Vocals
Lee Morse Vocals
Frank Munn Vocals
Harry Raderman Trombone
Terry Shand Vocals
Ted Fio Rito Track Performer
Chesney Allen Vocals
Bud Flanagan Vocals
Jack Teagarden Orchestra Performing Ensemble
Paul Whiteman Orchestra Performing Ensemble
Ted Lewis Orchestra Performing Ensemble
Adrian Rollini & the Gang Track Performer
Ed Kirkeby Leader
Harry Freeman Alto Saxophone
Jules Rubin Tenor Saxophone
Malcolm Crain Trumpet
Bea Wain Vocals
Ben Ginsberg String Bass
Irving Brodsky Piano
Bill Coty Vocals
Tom Dicarlo Trumpet
Bob Effros Trumpet
Tommy Thunen Trumpet
Bruce Yantis Violin
Max Goldberg Trumpet
Dave Klein Trumpet
Ed Inge Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
Russ Carlson Piano
Larry Abbott Clarinet, Kazoo
Buddy Lee Trumpet
Jack Aaronson Piano
Emil Coleman & His Riviera Orchestra Performing Ensemble
Ben Selvin Orchestra Performing Ensemble
Ted Wallace Track Performer
Phil Harris Cocoanut Grove Orchestra Track Performer
Robert Carroll Tenor Saxophone
Harold "Scrappy" Lambert Vocals
Technical Credits
George Gershwin Composer
Irving Berlin Composer
Sam Cooke Composer
Phil Harris Director
Bob James Composer
Kay Kyser Director
Paul Whiteman Director
Red Nichols Composer
Bert Ambrose Director
Horace Heidt Director
Abe Lyman Director
Freddy Martin Director
Jimmy McHugh Composer
Ozzie Nelson Director
Don Redman Director
Harold Arlen Composer
Emil Coleman Director
Milton Ager Composer
Ben Bernie Director
Rube Bloom Composer
Lew Brown Composer
Howard Dietz Composer
Frank Driggs Illustrations
Al Dubin Composer
Dorothy Fields Composer
John Flansburgh Composer
Ira Gershwin Composer
E.Y. "Yip" Harburg Composer
Lorenz Hart Composer
Ray Henderson Composer
Charles F. Kenny Composer
John Linnell Composer
Johnny Mercer Composer
Cole Porter Composer
Vincent Rose Director
Eddie Sauter Arranger
Arthur Schwartz Composer
Ben Selvin Director
Jesse Stone Composer
Bob Todd Composer
Paul Francis Webster Composer
Victor Young Director
Gene Gifford Arranger
Matty Malneck Composer
Jack Purvis Arranger
Gene Kardos Arranger, Director
Sam Lanin Director
Enric Madriguera Director
Adrian Schubert Director
Paul Specht Director
Phil Spitalny Director
Lew Stone Arranger
Jimmy Grier & His Orchestra Director
Ed Kirkeby Director
Dave Allan Composer
Dave Samuelson Illustrations
Jo Swiss Composer
Frank Churchill Composer
Jurgen Crasser Mastering
Willard Robison Composer
Holger Von Bargen Art Direction
Nadine Wuppesahl Artwork
Bert Read Arranger
Dave Wall Composer
Blue Steele Director
Sam Coslow Composer
Ted Koehler Composer
Jay Gorney Composer
John Jacob Loeb Composer
Cornell Todd Composer
Leonello Casucci Composer
Shelby Darnell Composer
Alex Bartha Director
Nick Kenny Composer
Billy Rose Composer
Herman Hupfeld Composer
Jon Townend Composer
Betty Prudhomme Composer
Beverly Prudhomme Composer
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