Talk:Western swing

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I wish those making authoritative statements about Western Swing wouldn't hide behind anonymous IP addresses, nor point their references to print sources with no excerpting of the relevant text (under fair-use, of course). Right, Mr. ? Jim, K7JEB 20:57, 20 January 2006 (UTC)

  • WorldCat Search will point you to a library near you if you want to check the sources for yourself. If I remember, I will hunt up the exact page numbers for you the next time I go to the library. 03:03, 6 May 2006 (UTC)

Gypsy jazz influence in Western Swing- Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli predate Bob Wills

  • That video biography on the YouTube link says Reinhardt and Grappelli only visited the US once, in 1935, after the Western Swing genre was firmly established. Their music is remarkably similar to Western Swing and does bolster the assertion that Western Swing is a form of jazz.Jim, K7JEB

Django and Grappelli were pre-western swing

Django influenced Western Swing —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:16, 25 October 2008 (UTC)

"Wills early guitarists deserve more credit for their pioneer efforts than the meager praise a few writers have grudingly given them. Most writers have tended to overemphasize the infulence on them of Django Reinhart and Charlie Christiansan and thereby overlook the innovativeness and creativity of Shamblin and McAuliffe. Actually, Eddie Lang had more influence than either Reinhart of Christian." accoding to Johnie Lee Wills. "By 1937, howver, Shamblin and especially McAuliffe had changed their performing technique and had made the guitar's role far more imposing than Lang, even with all his brilliance and ingenuity, would have dreamed." There is ONE reference to Rheinhart in this book The King of Western Swing - Bob Wills Remembered. Rosetta Wills. 1998. ISBN 0-8230-7744-6. Gypsy jazz doesn't appear in the index to this book.

Similarly, gypsy jazz is not in the index of Milton Brown and the Founding of Western Swing. Cary Ginell. 1994. University of Illinois Press. ISBN 0-252-02041-3, and Rheinhart, Django appears once. In the only use of Rheinhart's name in this book, Ginell writes that "The Brownies would have felt more comfortable in the small jazz clubs of Europe, playing alongside Reinhardt..." This is in NO way states that there was any influence. Quoted text in the reference has no information as the where it came from, but it wasn't from one of these two books written by people who did exhaustive research into Milton Brown and Bob Wills. Steve Pastor (talk) 19:12, 26 October 2008 (UTC)

I can tell you now that it Django gave you guys Western Swing, which doesn't really have anything innovative such as Gypsy minor music mixed with jazz or new chords and voicings etc. on the guitar. Just because you want to keep the influences "proper" and exclude non white musicians. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:47, 25 December 2008 (UTC)

Last time I checked Bessy Smith wasn't "white", and neither were many players of Dixieland, both of whom are acknowledged influences on both Bob Wills and Milton Brown. Steve Pastor (talk) 22:08, 25 December 2008 (UTC)

Well stop reverting, because Django was an influence on the watered down "jazz" known western swing, Grappelli was also an influence. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:02, 25 December 2008 (UTC)

I see how you people work, If I have a reliable source it is not good enough, I see whats going on, another ripped off genre by white musicians. Kinda like how whites took rock and roll and butchered it into undancable fluff, like emo. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:08, 25 December 2008 (UTC)

"Three years before Django Reinhardt made his first records, Dunn had a style as subtle and involved as Reinhardt's...Today there are people whohear the influence of Django Reinhardt in Bob Dunn's music, as if it were unthinkable that this Texas gentleman could create such a music on his own." from Country - the Twisted Roots of Rock 'n' Roll. Nick Tosches. 1977. 1985. DeCapo Press. page 180. ISBN 0-306-80713-0

First use of the term Western Swing in print[edit]

Take a look at this reference - Lang, Smile When You Call Me a Hillbilly, p. 89: In October 1944, Billboard made the following announcement, unceremoniously giving the subgenre its common label for the first time in a national publication: 'Spade Cooley will put out 25 of his original tunes, together with an album of band numbers and suggestions on arrangements for Western Bands. Book to be titled Western Swing.' "

Note the use of future, not present, or past, tense. The WorldCat database does not contain a book written by Spade Cooley. If he ever wrote, and had published, a book with the name "Western Swing", there is no evidence of it that I can find. Still, Billboard used the term.Steve Pastor (talk) 16:14, 25 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Steve Pastor; it is unlikly that WorldCat would list song folios. Billboard was most likely refering to this song book published in 1945 which contained 15, not 25, songs: Spade Cooley's Western Swing Song Folio. Which you can purchase at various music epehemra places on-line if you are interested.LowerCoach (talk) 22:15, 28 September 2008 (UTC)
The citation for the work would be: Cooley, Donnell C. "Spade". Spade Cooley's Western Swing Song Folio. Beverly Hills, Calif: Hill and Range Songs, Inc. (1945). LowerCoach (talk) 23:04, 28 September 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for that information. Still, the publication date is 1945, and Billboard used the term in 44. You don't by any chance have information about the places Cooley played, size of the crowds, how people danced to his music, etc? Do you think the "Origin of the Name" stuff could be better intigrated into the article? See, for instance the sentence(s) later in the article. Steve Pastor (talk) 14:45, 29 September 2008 (UTC)

Steve Pastor, my guess is that the Aberbachs paid for a small item to appear in the October 1944 Billboard to advertise their upcoming 1945 publication. Only a guess. The "Origin of the Name" is important to the article, but I am not experienced in collabrative writing so wouldn't know how to integrate it and still maintain its importance. Cooley played in a number of places, but off hand I only can give you a couple of quotes. Adam Komorowiski in the liner notes (actually a small booklet) to "Swingin' The Devil's Dream" pgs 3-4 states:
"Accounts vary, and some would have it that Phillips sacked Wakely because of his intransigence over the horns issue, but whatever, the net result was that from 1942, Cooley ran the band. For 18 months he experienced tremendous success, packing out the ballroom with huge crowds every weekend. An appearance in Gene Autry's Home In Wyomin' crowned a superb year for Spade. It was around this time that Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys came out West, and when Cooley fell out with Phillips, the promoter sacked he and hired Bob Wills in his place. A cocksure Cooley demanded a 'Battle of The Bands' before he vacated the Venice Pier, and in a contest held over two weekends, emerged the undisputed winner. He promptly proclaimed himself the 'King Of Western Swing', the first time the term was used to describe this style of music, and it was one that stuck. Nor was Cooley willing to have his crown usurped! He leased the Riverside Ranchero Ballroom, cutting out the need for a promoter and thus ensuring that all the profits came his way."
Komorowiski also quotes Jimmy Wakely (p. 3) as saying that when he (Wakely) ran the band:
"We opened at the Venice Ballroom at the L.A. Country Barn Dance and were a smash hit. We'd play for some 3500 to 4000 fans every Saturday night."
  • The source for these statements (from the main article) is: Komorowski, Adam. Spade Cooley: Swingin' The Devil's Dream. (Proper PVCD 127, 2003) booklet. LowerCoach (talk) 17:51, 29 September 2008 (UTC)

Remarkable attendance[edit]

I moved this from the text to this location so we can discuss it. This comment is "unreferenced".

"This is a remarkable claim that may be exaggerated, if the 10,000 sqft dance floor attributed earlier to the Riverside Rancho was considered noteworthy for its area, a mere 100x100ft. Today's rock and roll concerts, held in mammoth indoor sports stadiums requiring amplification levels not easily attainable in the 1940s, typically accommodate only ten to fifteen thousand attendees."

You may be correct that this figure is inflated. However, to include a comment such as yours in the article you have to have a reliable, verifiable source for the statement that questions the referenced figure, rather than your opinion.

I have to tell you that I, too, was blown away when I learned about how popular this music was on the West Coast. I think it's a travesty that these guys have sort of fallen out of public consciousness while everyone remembers the "big swing bands". But, that's my opinion and doesn't belong in the article. Steve Pastor (talk) 16:26, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

_Too Much_ Documentation?[edit]

(The crab apple speaks.) Some guys have complained about authoritative statements unsupported by any evidence. In this version I think there are also some absurdly over-documented positions. There are occasional paragraphs which mention individual recording sessions and subsequent impressions. This is meant to be a general article. If the recording is significant, give it its own article. If not, trim it from this one. Pittsburgh Poet (talk) 19:15, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

It would be helpful if we could talk about specific instances rather than generalities. One of the reasons, for instance, some "individual recording sessions" are listed is that it documents when and by whom various elements were added to the form, at least those that can be documented with "verifiable sources". I think is is more desireable than some general statement such as "they added electric guitars and drums in the 40s". Another example is where the term "western swing" came from. The information is around, sort of, but is often contradictory. I don't think it adds anything to "a general article" to present only vague statements when specifics are available. If this was already a huge article, and "everybody knew" all of the specifics, I would be more in agreement with you. Meanwhile, I don't doubt that some of the specifcs could be better integrated in the article. You really in Pittsburgh? Gonna talk to you! Steve Pastor (talk)

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