Stompin' at the Savoy

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"Stompin' at the Savoy" is a 1933 jazz standard composed by Edgar Sampson. It is named after the famed Harlem nightspot the Savoy Ballroom in New York City.[1]

History and composition[edit]

Although the song is credited to Benny Goodman, Chick Webb, Edgar Sampson, and Andy Razaf, it was written and arranged by Sampson, Rex Stewart's alto saxophonist. Sampson wrote the song when he was with Stewart's orchestra at the Empire Ballroom in 1933. It was used as the band's theme song until the band broke up, after which Sampson joined Webb's band, taking the song with him.[2] Both Webb and Goodman recorded it as an instrumental, Goodman's being the bigger hit.[1] Lyrics were added by lyricist Andy Razaf.[3]

Goodman's 1936 version is written in 32-bar song form with four 8-bar phrases arranged AABA. The A sections use a Db6, Ab9, Db6, Ddim, Ebm7, Ab7, Db, Db chord sequence. The B section phrases use a Gb9/G9, Gb9, B13/F#m6, B13, E9/F9, E9, A13, Ab13 chord sequence. The tempo is medium fast.

Chick Webb’s recording rose to number ten on the charts in 1934. Two years later the piece charted by Ozzie Nelson and by Benny Goodman. Since becoming a jazz standard, the song has been recorded hundreds of times, including by Judy Garland (1936), Charlie Christian (1941),[4] Art Tatum (1941), Clifford Brown and Max Roach (1954), Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong (1956), Jim Hall (1957),[5] Ahmad Jamal and Cal Tjader (1958),[6] Sarah Vaughan (1964),[1] the Boston Pops Orchestra (1991, under John Williams), and Nikki Yanofsky (with Herbie Hancock and will.i.am) (2007).

Other cover versions[edit]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Wilson, Jeremy. "Stompin' at the Savoy". JazzStandards.com. Retrieved 2 December 2011.
  2. ^ McGee, Earl, "Neither Benny Nor Chuck Wrote Savoy?", DownBeat 4: 4, p. 21 (April 1937).
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i Gioia, Ted (2012). The Jazz Standards. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 405–407. ISBN 978-0-19-993739-4.
  4. ^ Harrison et al, p. 1.
  5. ^ Harrison et al, p. 160.
  6. ^ Harrison et al, p. 282.
  7. ^ "Stompin at the Savoy - Tony Glausi, Lucas Pino, Julius Rodriguez, Dan Chmielinski, Bryan Carter". YouTube. 22 March 2019. Archived from the original on 2021-12-21. Retrieved 22 August 2020.

References[edit]

  • Harrison, Max; Fox, Charles; Thacker, Eric; Nicholson, Stuart (2000). The Essential Jazz Records: Modernism to Postmodernism. Continuum International Publishing Group. ISBN 978-0-7201-1822-3.

External links[edit]