Ben Selvin Orchestra

The Columbia House Bands: Ben Selvin, Vol. 1

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During 1919-42, Ben Selvin led more sessions than anyone else, resulting in around 5,000 titles. His busiest period was probably the 1929-33 Depression years, during which he contracted a series of melodic dance band records that featured songs rather than distinctive soloists. Clarinetist Benny Goodman was a regular, if anonymous, member in Selvin's orchestras, as were (to a lesser degree) trombonist Tommy Dorsey and altoist/clarinetist Jimmy Dorsey. This CD reissue from the late 1990s has some of the highlights from Selvin's huge output of 1931-32 (one number is from 1930) with OK vocals from Dick Robertson, Paul Small, Helen Rowland, Eddie Walters, Orlando Roberson (who would become a member of Claude Hopkins' Orchestra), the Wallace Trio, Jack Miller, the Rollickers and even (on "You Can Make My Life a Bed of Roses") Kate Smith. The jazz content is mostly fairly light on these dance band numbers, usually a half-chorus after the vocal, but the ensembles are clean and (for the period) swinging.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
feat: Ben Selvin
3:01
2
feat: Ben Selvin
3:39
3
feat: Ben Selvin
3:21
4
feat: Ben Selvin
3:16
5
feat: Ben Selvin
3:02
6
feat: Ben Selvin
3:32
7
feat: Ben Selvin
4:53
8
feat: Ben Selvin
3:40
9
feat: Ben Selvin
3:07
10
feat: Ben Selvin
3:31
11
feat: Ben Selvin
3:22
12
feat: Ben Selvin
3:06
13
feat: Ben Selvin
3:29
14
feat: Ben Selvin
3:11
15
feat: Ben Selvin
3:07
16
feat: Ben Selvin
3:09
17
feat: Ben Selvin
3:09
18
feat: Ben Selvin
3:00
19
feat: Ben Selvin
3:25
20
feat: Ben Selvin
4:52
21
feat: Ben Selvin
4:54
blue highlight denotes track pick