Shuffle Along: Original Cast Recording / Sissle, Blake, Miller, Lyles, Saunders, Browning

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The 1921 musical comedy, Shuffle Along, was a soaringly successful Broadway show. Contained inside this show are songs that would eventually become staples in the...

The 1921 musical comedy, Shuffle Along, was a soaringly successful Broadway show. Contained inside this show are songs that would eventually become staples in the repertoire, such as “I’m Just Wild About Harry” and “Love Will Find A Way.” This musical also served a civil purpose. As an all black musical, the show desegregated theaters all across the country. This album is being release alongside the April 2016 revival of the show, and features Tony Award-winning stars such as Brian Stokes Mitchell and Audra McDonald.

REVIEWS:

This fascinating release combines original recordings made in the acoustic era by members of the Shuffle Along company in conjunction with later performances, primarily by Noble Sissle and Eubie Blake, who wrote all the music and lyrics. It is, of course, by no means perfect, but it is representative of what was considered a landmark show in the history of black theater and the first “jazz” musical to hit Broadway...

Singer and lyricist Sissle was originally a drum major and vocalist for Lieutenant Jim Europe’s “Hellfighters” 369th Infantry Band in World War I...not even the Original Dixieland Jazz Band had yet made an appearance in New York. To them, jazz was what we now call “hot ragtime.”

Nevertheless, Shuffle Along remains a vitally important historical moment in the history of black entertainment. It was the first all-black show to have a wide appeal to white audiences, first gaining attention at the Howard Theatre in Washington for two weeks, then moving to the 63rd Street Theater in New York City in May before racking up 504 performances(!) at the Cort Theater on 48th Street. The cast included several names that would become famous over the next few years such as Adelaide Hall, Florence Mills (who replaced Gertrude Saunders after the first year), Fredi Washington and Paul Robeson—none of whom recorded anything from the show!—and a very young Josephine Baker in the chorus line.

-- The Art Music Lounge



Product Description:


  • Release Date: April 29, 2016


  • UPC: 632433320426


  • Catalog Number: HCD3204


  • Label: Harbinger Records


  • Number of Discs: 1


  • Period: Jazz


  • Composer: Eubie Blake


  • Performer: Eubie Blake, Noble Sissle



Works:


  1. Shuffle Along

    Composer: Eubie Blake, Noble Sissle

    Performer: Eubie Blake, Noble Sissle, Ivan Browning, Russ Williams, Gertrude Saunders, Flournoy E. Miller, Aubrey L. Lyles