Monday, August 8, 2011

Life This Week: August 8, 1938

Gin Sours recommended by none other than "Ed Sullivan...Famous Columnist"

serves 2

2 teaspoons sugar
2 jiggers gin
juice of one lemon
juice of one lime
soda water

In a cocktail shaker, stir the sugar into the gin and citrus juices until it dissolves.  Add ice and shake then strain into two sour glasses (or, in our case, Stella Artois glasses!), top with soda water and garnish with a maraschino cherry and a citrus slice or peel.  Enjoy!

What goes with Gin Sours better than big band music?

Even though most people today associate swing music with World War II, the article "Swing: the Hottest and Best Kind of Jazz Reaches its Golden Age" reads, "It was the fashion two years ago, and a year ago, and six months ago to say that the form of jazz called 'Swing' was on the way out."  It goes on to state that "as of August 1938, Swing is the most popular kind of popular music."  The article (which has lots of photos) also contains thirty record suggestions, which include swing selections from two decades. One section, "Swing's Black Royalty," traces the origins of the form back even farther to turn-of-the-century New Orleans.

"Here are 30 Good Hot Records" (at least what I could find of them):

Albert Ammons- "Boogie Woogie Stomp"

Louis Armstrong and his Hot Five- "West End Blues" (9th track)

Frankie Trumbauer Orchestra (Bix Beiderbecke on clarinet)- "Riverboat Shuffle" (7th track)

Bix Beiderbecke- "In a Mist" (7th track)

Connie Boswell (and Bing Crosby)- "Bob White" (3rd track)

Eddie Condon- "Carnegie Drag"

Bob Crosby's Band- "Rampart Street Parade" (This is supposedly a 1939 recording, but it was what I could find!)

Tommy Dorsey- "Stardust" (5th track, vocals by Frank Sinatra)

Duke Ellington- "Clarinet Lament" (17th track)

Chick Webb Orchestra (vocals: Ella Fitzgerald)

Benny Goodman- "Don't Be That Way" (9th track)

Benny Goodman Quartet- "Moonglow" (3rd track)

Fletcher Henderson- "Money Blues" (75th track)

Gene Krupa and his Chicagoans- "Blues of Israel" (1st track)

Meade Lux Lewis- "Yancy Special" (1942)

Red Norvo- "Blues in E Flat"

King Oliver's Creole Jazz Band- Dippermouth Blues (6th track)

Artie Shaw- "Nightmare" (8th track)

Fletcher Henderson (vocals: Bessie Smith)- "Young Woman's Blues" (156th track; 2nd from last)

Stuff Smith and his Onyx Club Boys- "You'se a Viper"

Fats Waller and his Rhythm- "Dinah"

Benny Goodman, Gene Krupa, Teddy Wilson, Lionel Hampton- "Body and Soul" (9th track)

Maxine Sullivan- "Loch Lomond" (11th track)

Slim & Slam- "Flat Foot Floogie" (13th track)

Also check out:
Life Goes to Manhattan Beach
U.S. Workmen Replace Foreign Peasants as Inspirations for New Fashions
Troops Close Iowa Maytag Plant
Back-to-school Fashions Advertisement
Speaking of Pictures...These are Shooting Sticks


  1. Yea for "Flat Foot Floogie". I think I'll go put on some big band now...

  2. Lauren, what's your very favorite way to drink gin? I have a feeling you are a cocktail expert!

  3. Ooh, those gin sours sound perfect for the summer. And I am a huge fan of big band music...I'll have to pop back when I have more time to listen~

  4. These photos are gorgeous - they are so Mad Men! Makes me want to put on my party dress. Gotta love a big band - with Fred and Ginger dancing.

  5. Your cocktail looks fantastic!

    It's been a while since my BF has mixed us some drinks, I am totally feeling like having a lychee martini tonight. :)

    The Cat Hag
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  6. Love that first photo--such a nice retro feel. And I can't wait to listen to all those songs--thanks for posting.
    I really love that bandanna dress--it actually looks very current. Very interesting about the fashion influence of peasant and workingmen clothes.

  7. Listened to some of the music - so wonderful!

  8. We have the same Stella Artois glasses! I'll pull them out for this cocktail. :) Love your selection of Big Band here, too.

  9. mmm the cocktail sounds super good :)

  10. Kelsey- my favorite gin cocktails (so far) are: Gin & Tonic, Gin & French, White Ladies and Gimlets. I also on occasion like a gin martini on the rocks with a twist, but I have to be in the mood for it! If you go to my "Recipes, by Ingredient" page and scroll down to "Gin" there are recipes for the G&T, G&F, white ladies and gimlets. I'm no expert--I just like trying lots of new things!

  11. Your website has a lot of really interesting recipes on it that I need to try. The Blackberry and Apple pie looks especially good.

  12. great pix sister. and love the music. i am a lover of swing myself. and every bit of jazz.


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