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Lonesome Roads and Streets of DreamsPlace, Mobility, and Race in Jazz of the 1930s and ’40s$
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Andrew S. Berish

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780226044941

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226044965.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 23 October 2019

From the “Make Believe Ballroom” to the Meadowbrook Inn: Charlie Barnet and the Promise of the Road

From the “Make Believe Ballroom” to the Meadowbrook Inn: Charlie Barnet and the Promise of the Road

Chapter:
(p.73) Two From the “Make Believe Ballroom” to the Meadowbrook Inn: Charlie Barnet and the Promise of the Road
Source:
Lonesome Roads and Streets of Dreams
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226044965.003.0003

This chapter investigates Charlie Barnet, who developed for his orchestra an explicitly black musical style, and also addresses his songs “Pompton Turnpike,” and “Drop Me Off in Harlem.” These songs represented well the band's approach to dance band music, but they also exhibited how this aesthetic was covered in questions of place and mobility. The musical-spatial characteristics of “Pompton Turnpike” were closely linked to Barnet's understanding of certain black musical practices and what they offered his band. “Drop Me Off in Harlem” was about as hot as the Barnet band played. “Pompton Turnpike” and “Drop Me Off in Harlem” would turn out to be key moments in the band's history. The music of Charlie Barnet and His Orchestra represented a powerful aesthetic and intellectual coming to terms with the new social relationships permitted by a rapidly modernizing nation.

Keywords:   Charlie Barnet, Pompton Turnpike, Harlem, dance band music, mobility, Orchestra

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