By the late 1940s, bebop was all the rage—thanks largely to radio disc jockeys who hyped the music and artists through the air-play of records on late-night shows. What began in the mid-'40s as a spectacular, secular jazz style flourished by 1948 as more musicians figured out how to play and arrange it for small groups and big bands. [Photo by Herman Leonard/CTSImages.com]
By 1949, more singers were glamorizing bop, giving the novel form a novelty feel. Here are 10 examples of bop vocal recordings in the '40s—before vocalese artists in the early '50s took jazz singing to a new level:
- What's This? (1945)—Dave Lambert and Buddy Stewart with Gene Krupa.
- Charge Account (1946)—Dave Lambert and Buddy Stewart with Red Rodney.
- Lop-Pow (1947)—Babs Gonzales with Three Bips and a Bop.
- Ool-ya-koo (1947)—Kenny Hagood and Dizzy Gillespie.
- I'm Be Boppin' Too (1948)—Dizzy Gillespie.
- Euphoria (1948)—Jackie Cain and Roy Kral with Charlie Ventura. [Pictured: Jackie Cain with Charlie Ventura]
- O'Henry (1949)—Bunny Briggs with Charlie Barnet.
- Bebop Spoken Here (1949)—Dave Lambert, Buddy Stewart and Trudy Richards with Charlie Barnet.
- Hey Pete, Let's Eat Mo Meat! (1949)—Joe Carroll with Dizzy Gillespie.
- Land of Oo-Bla-Dee (1949)—Joe Carroll with Dizzy Gillespie.
JazzWax clip: Here's English accordionist Tito Burns and His Sextet with Burns and Terry Devon sharing the vocal on Bebop Spoken Here, recorded in London in June 1949 ...