Talk:Swing music

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Interesting article but it needs a section on the rest of the world outside the US Johncmullen1960 08:24, 19 February 2007 (UTC)


can i know any facts of swing music eg when did it begun the musicians the editors the people who sing anddance

Bold text i wanna no facts about swing for my music project and i cant find anything!!!!!! >:-(

  • Better have your doctor adjust your medication. —Wahoofive (talk) 16:01, 2 May 2005 (UTC)
    • Ranting like that won't help. When you post, make a topic and use a signature. Learn how to spell too.--toaster 00:15, 25 August 2006 (UTC)

Relationships between swing dancers and musicians[edit]

PlainJane The following sentence:

"Ironically, early swing musicians were often in fact annoyed by the young people who would throw a room into chaos by seemingly tossing each other across the floor at random — thus somewhat nullifying the idea that swing was developed as dance music, when in fact, swing dancing evolved among young aficionados to complement the energy of the music."

Needs substantiation: there are as many comments from musicians from the day in appreciation of the dancers. I think of band leaders like Chick Webb in particular. It might be more productive to have a comment indicating that not all musicians liked dancers. Historically, dance and music often developed in tandem in the Afro-American vernacular tradition, and the earliest band leaders toured the US _with_ dancers (see this ref for descriptions: Malone, Jacqui. Steppin' on the Blues: The Visible Rhythms of African American Dance. Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1996.)

Check out the article on Benny Goodman. He is said to have hated the jitterbuggers.

-- I agree
As a swing (Lindy) dancer who has done some research on the origins of the dance, I find the article statement a bit pat, and probably innacurate. I have heard snippets of references that some musicians did react poorly to the 'random tossing', possibly giving rise to the derogatory connotation associated with the term 'Jitterbug'. However, this may have only been in reference to unskilled dancing by those who didn't fully 'get it', not swing dancing itself.

The inclusion of Benny Goodman as one of these musicians is interesting given the other 'questionable' comment about 'dumbed down' music. Goodman 'swung', but many of his tunes / arrangements (Stardust e.g.) seem better suited to the smoother dance style of Foxtrot than the higher energy Lindy. Because these two styles use the floor differently there was (and is) some friction between them at dance halls leading to the 'racetrack' rules where travelling dancers get the outside and rooted dance styles get the interior of the floor. Foxtrot was certainly more popular and widespread a Jazz dance style than Lindy/swing before 1935, particularly among white audiences. It could be imagined that some band leaders who wanted to draw big crowds in towns where Lindy hadn't caught on may have internalized complaints from these 'mainstream' dancers who helped fill the big halls and objected to the 'chaos'. This may have helped give rise to an 'old fogey' evolution of band styles beginning after WWII while young Jazz musicians gravitated to BeBop (for 'sit-down'audiences) and young dancers gravitated to jump blues and rock. Some musicians like Count Basie kept right on swinging hard, though.

Every bit of history I have read indicates that Jazz music and dance styles evolved side by side from the Ragtime era and its roots. They influenced each other significantly at each stage. This makes sense, because gigs in dance bands or at dance halls during this early era was probably financially critical to the survival of even a purist 'performance' musician. Alan Lomax's recordings of Jelly Roll Morton indicate that playing for dancers was a significant if not a dominant part of an early Jazz musician's career. Also, Malcolm X's biography touches on the swing music of the Zoot Suit era and talks about how top bands would welcome the best dancers to 'Jam' along with them after the main dance when they would both cut loose. These touring bands typically included the best soloists of the day. --Natureboykm 19:45, 12 April 2007 (UTC)

Here's a reference (Frankie Manning & Norma Miller interview for Ken Burns' Jazz) to original sources regarding the above points. Pages 6 and 15 indicate strong co-evolution of swing dance and music. Page 19 supports the assertion that despite this history some musicians like Goodman weren't crazy about the dancing. However, Goodman's bandleader heyday was later in the swing era and this point of view is characterized as a minority among musicians of the day by the sources. --Natureboykm 22:51, 13 April 2007 (UTC)


I've redirected Jive (genre) here for now and I offer you this is from a previous version of the Jive disambiguation page:

Jive is Swing music, or a type of quick-paced and energetic jazz. Cow Cow Davenport recorded a song called State Street Jive in 1928. Mitchell Parish defined it as "syncopated music played noisily, and (usually) fast, with great emphasis on rhythm."

Ewlyahoocom 12:25, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

misplaced sentence[edit]

I've removed this sentence that came right after the list of samples: "The other is the development of rhythm and blues and jump blues in the black community, after the war, which became popular because smaller 3-to-5-piece combos were found to be more profitable than large swing bands."

It was out of place. This should of been in the section on the decline of swing, but the gist of this sentence seems to have been covered in the first paragraph of the "decline" section, so rather than move it I just took it off. --Tomtheebomb 07:55, 9 January 2007 (UTC)

The second change that occurred as swing music increased in popularity outside the black community, was, to some extent, an increasing pressure on musicians and band leaders to soften 'some would say dumb-down)' the music to cater to a more staid and conservative, Anglo-American audience. In the United States, there was some resistance to the acceptance of swing music until around 1939.

In later decades, the popular, sterilized, mass-market form of swing music would often, and unfortunately, be the first taste that younger generations might be exposed to, which often led to it begin labeled something akin to 'old fogey big-band dance music'.

Lots of POV here. The dumbed down quote is supposedly softened by "some would say", but still pretty snarky. Lets talk about the later decades, and the popular sterilized mass market form. Which decades? Per the article, swing was not pervasive until 1935, and was in serious decline when the war econonmy took hold in 1943/44. So if you are denigrating the swing music of the thirties and fourties with the term "unfortunate", what is left? Is your point that music liked by a lot of people must be bad? IF your point is swing became worthless when white people started to like it, that is a sentiment unworthy or wiki.

If I am wrong here, identify the elements of the music which were sterlized out, dont just throw stones.

While swing is a historical genre, and not widely listened to today, it is still beloved among a subset of the population, as I can attest due to the audiences who love my band. And the music they love is the stuff from Ellington, Basie, Goodman, Miller, etc. The earlier music is obscure and rarely performed. IF the fact that these bands were widely successful in their day, and attracted millions of listeners, or the fact that some of them were white bothers you, that is your point of view, not historical fact.

Should I "undo" the Afro/Euro History section edit?[edit]

At 20:53, 27 September 2006, WikiEditor Frontstcorner added the first half of the first paragraph of the history section. It's awful, but I'll back that up with some argument. Here's his (her?) contribution, with my comments in italics:

African American This is the only time we see the genre referred to as "African American swing" in the article "swing" is not, as some which? Eurocentric if this, er, condition contributes to a misunderstanding, please state how musicologists would try Did they try or would they try? This is a straw man. to characterize in Western musical paradigms He says that like it's a bad thing. I understand NPOV, but does this sound neutral to anybody?, syncopation Who said this? Straw man, nor does it have a "tripleted feel."Another Straw man, and somebody already hit this with Citation Needed [citation needed] . From here on out, the rhetoric gets deep and the information gets shallow. I feel that if you cannot describe a thing, then you do not understand it--piling on impenetrable (or is it just me?) catch-phrases does not help, and to me indicates a desire to obfuscate. This perception of mine is what motivated me to research the origin and extent of this text, which is so clearly different from the rest of the article. It makes me suspect that what the editor really knows is catch-phrases, not Swing. There is a good description of the rhythmic aspects of swing in the SWUNG_NOTE Wikipedia entry, and it does not rely upon a single one of the following individually clear but in combination incomprehensible phrases. Or is it just me?. Rather, it is a hybrid concept of time/pulse and rhythm: the result of the miscegenation Excuse me? between West African triple meter and multiple rhythmic layering with Western European duple meter and singular rhythm. This "3 inside 2" is a fundamentally West African-descended phenomenon, found in all African diasporic musics where more than one time and more than one rhythm coexist. Enslaved Africans in the Diaspora developed unique types of "swing" - in Cuba, Haiti, Puerto Rico, Brazil, etc.

I'm new to this Wikipedia editing, so I am proceeding gingerly. Please forbear my format mistakes (education gladly accepted but not solicited--I'll get there).

Haakondahl 12:01, 7 May 2007 (UTC)

Absolutely, undo[edit]

Benny Goodman integrated jazz on stage and on record. Lionel Hampton returned the favor. The reality of racial mixing in actual performance of the music indicates that people whould refrain from making an artificial separation of swing in to black and white genres. Dogru144 04:57, 13 July 2007 (UTC)

I agree(d) that it should be edited, which is why I already took out most of the material that was objected to above. I think it's pretty neutral now while still respecting that swing has multicultural origins. If anyone thinks it still needs changes, feel free to bring them up or edit as you see fit. Sorry that I forgot to mention that here earlier. norm77 16:25, 13 July 2007 (UTC)

Relationship to Jump Blues?[edit]

As I understand, Jump blues is usually played with swung notes as well, and heavily inspired by swing music. Shouldn't the article also mention the relationship to Jump Blues? Any music experts around that could actually write something accurate here?

The sample[edit]

The sample doesn't work.. Computer says that there is no sample "yet". —Preceding unsigned comment added by Pamela courson (talkcontribs) 16:38, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

Appears to work now, at least. Perhaps a link to the file was added to the article was added before the file was downloaded. Perhaps you needed to wait for it to download to your browser. Hyacinth (talk) 22:03, 22 July 2008 (UTC)

Image copyright problem with Image:Jumpin' At The Woodside.ogg[edit]

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The list was just merged&redirected to (the now fully-referenced) List of jazz standards (per discussion at talk). You may wish to incorporate a small/referenced part of the old list of swing jazz standards in this article. Just a note. -- Quiddity (talk) 18:50, 18 March 2009 (UTC)


In the 1920s origins section is the following: "During the 1920s and early 1930s, filip dance form of jazz was popular." Emphasis mine. First, what is "filip"? Second, even without the word, this sentence seems either incomplete or not quite making clear sense. It appears this sentence needs to be rewritten. Does anyone have any thoughts? — al-Shimoni (talk) 20:22, 3 July 2010 (UTC)

Swing music prohibited?[edit]

The article states that the Nazis banned swing music, but on youtube there are tons of German swing records from that period: eg. (talk) 15:52, 12 August 2010 (UTC)

All unrefernced material may be challenged and removed. I've got too many irons in the fire to try to redo this entire artilce! Steve Pastor (talk) 16:42, 12 August 2010 (UTC)

20s Jazz was 4 beats![edit]

It's simply wrong to say that "The styles of jazz that were popular from the late teens through the late 1920s were usually played with rhythms with a two beat feel"

For instance, in the 1920s, the work of Armstrong, Morton and Beiderbecke was predominantly (exclusively?) in four. Fats Waller's piano rolls (early to mid 20s) are mostly in four (the one's I've heard). (Many examples on Youtube.)

Ragtime, of course, was essentially in two - but that wasn't jazz!

Skepticaltogether (talk) 16:02, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

why is there a picture of Caro Emerald?[edit]

In the Late 1990s section there is a picture of Caro Emerald. She isn't mentioned anywhere else in the article, aside from the picture. Additionally, her career started in 2007, according to her wikipedia page. Does anyone else feel her picture is out of place? I'm new to editing (I made an account to just to comment on this), but it appears to me that the only reason she is mentioned is because someone wants to promote her.

--Wartodas (talk) 17:39, 5 May 2013 (UTC)

You have the ability to delete that picture. If someone disagrees, they may revert, but that's how this thing works. Steve Pastor (talk) 17:38, 6 May 2013 (UTC)

correct typo, please[edit]

In the second paragraph, there is a sentence fragment. It's not obvious to me what should go there, so not correcting myself. "...loosely tied wind and. The..."

-- Mikehaynes67 (talk) 20:51, 7 November 2016 (UTC)

@OnBeyondZebrax: It derives from this 2014 edit. The intended meaning is not clear to me either. Ghmyrtle (talk) 20:56, 7 November 2016 (UTC)

Never mind, this section was a repeat from further down in the article, so I corrected it based on what was noted there: "wind and brass" (though, that feels a little redundant to me, since brass instruments are wind instruments themselves.  ;-)

-- Mikehaynes67 (talk) 20:59, 7 November 2016 (UTC)

Reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeally, reeeeeeeeeeeeally awful article[edit]

Either do this over, or can it — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:37, 12 March 2017 (UTC)

Of course, you can edit it and improve it yourself - just so long as you base what you write on reliable sources, and cite them correctly. Edits based on your personal opinion will, if unsourced, probably be removed. If you're unsure about anything, it's best to canvass other editors' opinions on this page first. Ghmyrtle (talk) 10:10, 13 March 2017 (UTC)