Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Give Swing a Chance Says Benny Goodman

Benny Goodman, $125,000-a-year "King of Swing", now 28, chose to play a clarinet when he was 9, because it was so pretty. Conductor Leopold Stokowski calls him one of the world's best clarinetists.

Give Swing a Chance Says Benny Goodman
by Benny Goodman

There is one thing swing critics cannot combat. That is, that the public approves of swing. So why not give it a chance to prove it is not a flash in the pan, but the only really truly American music we have? Every other form of musical expression portrayed as a dance form originated abroad. Swing, as it is now being written and created, originates solely in the minds of musicians who think in the American way.

Some persons object to modernizing old songs into swing tempo. The answer is that swing is still young and needs nourishment.

To educate the people to enjoy original swing creations, we must feed them something they know of, can understand and enjoy because the melody is familiar.

The present day swing artist is a pioneer, creating something that in the future will become the popular expression of the day. So the next time you hear swing, just figure to yourself that you are in on the birth of something your grandchildren will some day take for granted in the same manner as you take opera today, and you will feel as I always do - awed.

Look Magazine, September 27, 1938

Caprice XXIV - Adapted from Paganini's Caprice No. 24 in A minor


  1. I LOVE listening to Benny Goodman, such beautiful music..makes me feel immensely happy and energetic.. I can't help but dance when I hear it! :)

  2. MORE! MORE! MORE! I am just going to keep posting the same comment until we see that magazine from cover to cover! Thanks for sharing this!

  3. Don't worry, you're gonna get it all! There are about 6 pages in the magazine devoted to swing. The last is pretty wacky - right up your alley! ;)


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