Berg, Gertude (Molly Goldberg)
Brandeis, Louis D.
Ginsburg, Ruth Bader
Lehman, Herbert H.
Levy, Uriah P.
Magnes, Judah L.
Santangel, Luis de
Seixas, Gershom M.
Singer, Isaac B.
Straus, Isidor & Ida
Torres, Luis de
Wise, Isaac Mayer
by Marika Somogyi (1989), Benny Goodman, The King of Swing
David Goodman grew up in a tough Chicago ghetto. His father took
Benny and two brothers to a local synagogue, where they received
musical instruments and lessons. Benny later studied with Franz
Shoepp, a clarinetist in the Chicago Symphony, which undoubtedly
accounts for his love of classical music.
made history at the Palomar Ballroom in Los Angeles on August
21, 1935, when the crowd of jumping, cheering youngsters surrounded
the bandstand during a swinging arrangement of Sugar Foot Stomp
... and the Swing Era was born! History was made again in March,
1937 when more than 21,000 people jammed their way into the New
York Paramount Theater to bounce in their seats and dance in the
aisles to the Benny Goodman Band. And his 1938 Carnegie Hall Jazz
Concert has earned an honored place in America's musical folklore.
is that the Benny Goodman Quartet, featuring Gene Krupa on drums,
Teddy Wilson on piano, and vibraphonist Lionel Hampton, made the
first dent in the color barrier that had until then kept bands
all white or all black. Hamptn has said that "the Benny Goodman
Quartet was the forerunner of getting Jackie Robinson into baseball."
was equally at home playing Mozart with the Boston Symphony or
jamming at Harlem's Savoy Ballroom. Bartok dedicated his clarinet
trio "Contrasts" to Benny Goodman in 1938; later Goodman commissioned
Aaron Copeland's Concerto for Clarinet and String Orchestra in
1947, and Morton Gould's Derivations for Clarinet and Band in
1955. Benny Goodman was also a composer, having co-written standards
such as Stompin' at the Savoy and Swingtime in the Rockies.
was elected to the faculties of the Juilliard School of Music
and Boston University. In 1962, when "The King of Swing" made
a successful tour of the Soviet Union, one newspaper reporter
quipped that "Khrushev would trade three Sputniks for a Russian
Broadcast of 1937" was the first of a long list of movies in which
Goodman appeared, and of course he supplied all of the clarinet
solos for the 1956 hit "The Benny Goodman Story" starring Steve
Allen. Anyone who was lucky enough to see Benny Goodman in person,
listen to him on the radio, or dance to his records, knows why
he was called "America's Number One Musician" by musicologist
Here to Take Benny Goodman Quiz
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