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The Most Popular Song Hits And Performers Of 1920

   
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1920 Pop Standards and Artists

 

This make-up was perfectly acceptable in  the 1920s!1. Swanee - Al Jolson
Al Jolson was known as "The World's Greatest Entertainer" - the highest paid and most well-known actor/singer/comedian of the 1920s and 30s. Swannee was originally song by Al but was written by George Gershwin. Gershwin would go on to write many other popular songs that would come out of his Broadway successes with his brother Ira, most notably Porgy and Bess and Strike up the Band.

2. When My Baby Smiles At Me - Ted Lewis
A bandleader, Ted was probably best know for his catchphrase: "Is EVERYBODY Happy?"
Although originally recorded in 1920, the song became the title of a movie musical, in 1948 starring Betty Grable and Dan Dailey. Dailey would win an academy award for his starring role in the film.

3. Whispering - Paul Whiteman
Whispering was recorded by Paul Whiteman and his orchestra and was written by John Schonberger and Vincent Rose. The song actually has lyrics but they were not used on the first recording. According to the Literature that was provided by Victor, the recording studio, the song used an instrument that sounded like a "boson's-pipe-slide-trombone-whistle."

4. I'll Be With You In Apple Blossom Time - Charles Harrison
Like many songs from this era, 'Apple Blossom Time' originally came out in 1920, but made a comeback in the 1940's during WW 2. The song, sung by The Andrew Sisters, had meaning for many who were waiting for the return of out troops. Other songs in this category are I'll Be Seeing You, and I'll be Home for Christmas.

5. Tell Me, Little Gypsy - Art Hickman
Originally sung by Art Hickman, 'Gypsy' was written by the immortal Irving Berlin. Berlin's first hit was Alexander's Rag Time Band. Mr. Berlin would go on to write music for more than half of the 20th century. Two of his most popular are Blue Skies and White Christmas. His influence is still felt today.

  Top Artists and Songs of 1920
Buy It! Al Jolson
Chloe
I've Got My Captain Working For Me Now
Swanee
Tell Me
Wonderful Kid From Madrid
You Ain't Heard Nothin Yet
Buy It! Art Hickman
Avalon
Hold Me
Tell Me Little Gypsy
The Love Nest
Buy It! Ben Selvin
Dardanella
My Island of Golden Dreams
Afghanistan
Buy It! Bert Williams - In World War II, the United States ship SS Bert Williams was named in his honor.
The Moon Shines on the Moonshine
Buy It! Billy Murray
I'll See You In Cuba
Buy It! Carl Fenton
Cuban Moon
Buy It! Charles Harrision
I'll Be With You In Apple Blossom Time
Pretty Kitty Kelly
That Old Irish Mother of Mine
Buy It! Eddie Cantor - nicknamed "Banjo Eyes" because of his big, round eyes. He was the also the man who named the "March of Dimes" which initally battled polio.
Palesteena
You'd Be Surprised
Buy It! Edith Day -had a cocktail named after her - made with dry gin, grapefruit juice, sugar, and an egg white.
Alice Blue Gown
Irene
Buy It! Francisco Alves
Fala Meu Louro
Buy It! Frank Crumit
Lonesome Little Raindrop
My Little Bimbo Down on Bamboo Isle
Oh! By Jingo! (Oh! By Gee, By Goosh, By Gun, By Juu)
Buy It! John McCormac
Barefoot Trail
Buy It! John Steel
The Love Nest, Girl of My Dreams
Buy It! Mamie Smith - Mamie was the first African-American woman to be a 'million seller artist. After 'Crazy Blues" the recording companies started paying more attention to race records.
Crazy Blues
It's Right Here For You
You Can't Keep A Good Man Down
Buy It! Marion Harris- Marion was the first popular white singer to sing jazz and blues songs.
St. Louis Blues
Sweet Mama (Papa's Getting Mad)
Buy It! Nora Bayes - In 1917, George M. Cohan asked her to be the first to record his patriotic WW I son,Over There.
Prohibition Blues
Without You
Buy It! Paul Whiteman - Paul was (controversally) called The King of Jazz. Duke Ellington believed he deserved the title, so there really shouldn't be a controversy.
Antime Anyday Anywhere
The Japanese Sandman
Wang Wang Blues
Whispering
Buy It! Ted Lewis and his Orchestra - Better known as Ted 'is Everybody Happy?' Lewis.
When My Baby Smiles At Me
Buy It! The Kentucky Serenaders - The Pennsylvania band was originally called The Serenaders. "My Old Kentucky Home" was their theme song, and Kentucky kind of stuck with them.
Rose of Washington Square
Buy It! Waller Williams
I Know Where The Flies Go In Summertime

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