Before hip hop, before rock ‘n’ roll even, there was a kind of music that worried parents, threatened American values, and was predicted to bring down Western culture as we know it. It was called swing.
Fast-paced, with its roots firmly embedded in jazz, and rising to popularity out of the African American music scene, swing was all the rage, not only in the 1930s but the ’40s, too. Swing music had its own stars, like Ella Fitzgerald and Benny Goodman.
This audio with photos gives a fine sense of what swing was like:
Even cartoon star Betty Boop gets swingin’ with a new character named Sally Swing (I think Sally is voiced by actress Rose Marie):
However did we survive such decadence?
Coming up next: Dancing to swing music. The rage and the glory.