Sing, Sing, Sing (8:15)

Cover of Ken Burns Jazz

From Ken Burns Jazz and 132 other releases

“Sing, Sing, Sing (With a Swing)” is a 1936 song, written by Louis Prima, that has become one of the definitive songs of the big band and swing era. Although written by Prima, it is often most associated with Benny Goodman. The song has since been covered by numerous artists. It was used in the Broadway Musical Swing!

On July 6, 1937, “Sing, Sing, Sing” was recorded in Hollywood with Benny Goodman on clarinet; Harry James, Ziggy Elman , and Chris Griffin on trumpets; Red Ballard and Murray McEachern on trombones; Hymie Schertzer and George Koenig on alto saxophones; Art Rollini and Vido Musso on tenor saxophone; Jess Stacy on piano; Allan Reuss on guitar; Harry Goodman on bass; and Gene Krupa on drums. The song was arranged by Jimmy Mundy. Unlike most big band arrangements of that era, which were limited in length to about 3 minutes so that they could be recorded on one side of a standard 10-inch 78-rpm record, the Goodman band’s version of “Sing, Sing, Sing” was an extended work. The 1937 recording lasted 8 min 43 seconds, and took up both sides of a 12-inch 78. At its longest, a live recording (with several impromptu solos) was actually recorded and took up a whole 12 min 30 sec. Mundy’s arrangement incorporated “Christopher Columbus”, a piece written by Chu Berry for the Fletcher Henderson band, as well as Prima’s work.

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