Monday, January 16, 2012

"Is Everybody Happy?" - Ted Lewis

Here's a complete change of pace - my first upload of vintage popular music on this blog.  I hope those of you who have come to expect classical recordings from me will indulge me here, but I have loved the unique stylings of Ted Lewis, the "high-hatted tragedian of jazz," ever since discovering them about 20 years ago.  And when Ken Halperin of Collecting Record Covers very kindly sent me a copy of this set (and several other 78 sets) after having featured the Steinweiss cover on his blog, I was moved to share it here.  So here it is:

"Is Everybody Happy?"
Ted Lewis and his Band
1. Blues (My Naughty Sweetie Gives to Me)
2. Good Night
3. Some of These Days (with Sophie Tucker)
4. On the Sunny Side of the Street
5. Somebody Stole My Gal
6. Tiger Rag
7. Have You Ever Been Lonely?
8. The World Is Waiting for the Sunrise
Recorded 1926-33
Columbia Set C-69, four 10" 78-rpm records
Link (FLAC files, 72.72 MB)
Link (MP3 files, 28.95 MB)

Four of the above sides feature Ted's vocals, with a lazily spoken delivery that surely influenced the Ink Spots several years later.  Three of the sides feature his rather squawky clarinet playing.  Many people find these recordings corny, and because of that, many jazz historians tend to downplay Ted Lewis' influence as a jazz artist.  But in his heyday (the 1920s and early 30s) he was highly respected, and a number of great jazzmen came through his band, including both Dorsey brothers and Benny Goodman.


  1. Bryan, it is a good decision!!! Thank you!!!

  2. Very nice to hear some Jazz - thanks!

  3. I'm a big fan of jazz, especially late '20s and '30s. It's a great bonus to have the violinist. Love the smooth and elegant sax intro to Sunny Side of the Street with Lewis' wonderful juxtaposition of his sad-sounding vocals to the happy lyrics.

    Keep it up and thanks.