on 21 July 2017
“Shout, Sister, Shout!” by the Boswell Sisters, released by the now defunct Living Era label from UK in 2003, is a single CD with 25 songs. This was my first CD on the Boswell Sisters and have remained my reference until the recent release of “Boswell Sisters Collection” (Acrobat Music, 2017, 2CDs, 50 songs). To appreciate the significance of each song more, I have included the singles label & number, chart position, release date, plus personal comments (US=US Singles Chart prior to 1955):
01 SHOUT, SISTER, SHOUT! (Brunswick 6109)(b-side to “Roll On, Mississippi, Roll On”, June 1931)
02 WHEN I TAKE MY SUGAR TO TEA (Brunswick 6083)(a-side, US 6/April 1931)*from movie "Monkey Business" starring the Marx Brothers; their 1st charted single under name Boswell Sisters
03 ROLL ON, MISSISSIPPI, ROLL ON (Brunswick 6109)(a-side, US 7/June 1931)*their 2nd chart single
04 IT’S THE GIRL (Brunswick 6151)(a-side, US 9/September 1931)
05 IT’S YOU (Brunswick 6151)(b-side to “It’s the Girl”, September 1931)
06 (WITH YOU ON MY MIND I FIND) I CAN’T WRITE THE WORDS (Brunswick 6170)(a-side, US 20/October 1931)
07 SHINE ON HARVEST MOON (Brunswick 6173)(b-side to “Heebie Jeebies”, August 1931)
08 HEEBIE JEEBIES (Brunswick 6173)(uncharted a-side, August 1931)
09 AN EV’NING IN CAROLINE (Brunswick 6218)(a-side, US 12/December 1931)
10 EVERYBODY LOVES MY BABY (BUT MY BABY DON’T LOVE NOBODY BUT ME)(Brunswick 6271)(b-side to “Stop the Sun, Stop the Moon (My Man’s Gone)”, April 1932)
11 IT DON’T MEAN A THING (IF IT AIN’T GOT THAT SWING)(Brunswick 6442)(uncharted a-side, November 1932)
12 CRAZY PEOPLE (Brunswick 6847)(uncharted a-side, 1934)
13 FORTY SECOND STREET (Brunswick 6545)(uncharted a-side, April 1933)
14 SHUFFLE OFF TO BUFFALO (Brunswick 6545)(b-side to “Forty Second Street”, April 1933)
15 THAT’S HOW RHYTHM WAS BORN (Brunswick 6650)(b-side to “Sophisticated Lady”, September 1933)
16 YOU OUGHTA BE IN PICUTRES (MY STAR OF STARS)(Brunswick 6798)(a-side, US 17/April 1934)*from Broadway musical "Ziegfeld Follies of 1934" starring Fanny Brice
17 DON’T LET YOUR LOVE GO WRONG (Brunswick 6929)(uncharted a-side, June 1934)
18 WHY DON’T YOU PRACTICE WHAT YOU PREACH (Brunswick 6929)(b-side to “Don’t Let Your Love Go Wrong”, June 1934)
19 ROCK AND ROLL (Brunswick 7302)(a-side, US 7/November 1934)*from movie "Transatlantic Merry-Go-Round" starring Jack Benny; the first popular song to use this phrase in its title
20 IF I HAD A MILLEION DOLLARS (Brunswick 7302)(b-side to “Rock and Roll”, November 1934)
21 THE OBJECT OF MY AFECTION (Brunswick 7348)(a-side, US 1(2)/January 1935)
22 DINAH (Brunswick 7412)(a-side, US 3(2)/April 1935)
23 FARE THEE WELL, ANNABELLE (Brunswick 9823)(uncharted a-side, July 1935)
24 CHEEK TO CHEEK (Decca 574)(a-side, US 10/November 1935)*from movie "Top Hat" starring Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire
25 I’M GONNA SIT RIGHT DOWN & WRITE MYSELF A LETTER (Decca 671)(a-side, US 3(2)/February 1936)*their last charted single
1 This is a decent release on the Boswell Sisters. Even with the more comprehensive coverage on the Acrobat Music release, there are three songs in this set not found in the Acrobat Music set, namely (1) “It’s You”, (2) “Everybody Loves My Baby”, and (3) “Fare Thee Well, Annabelle”.
2 Considering the age of the recordings, the sound is well remastered. Of course, some surface noise is audible but quite acceptable.
3 There is an eight page booklet, with an informative essay by Peter Dempsey. The song listing is also excellent, including labels and numbers, chart positions, release dates, plus names of orchestras or personnel on each song.
4 Time: 75 minutes. Good value!
1 Too many songs are still missing.
COMPLETE SINGLES DISCOGRAPHY:
I have just finished compiling a Complete Singles Discography on the Boswell Sisters (and along the way, also Connee Boswell), I have discovered that they actually have 49 singles from 1925 – 1936 (charted and uncharted, As & Bs, 90 songs not 98 songs because 4 were repeated releases and 4 b-sides belonged to other artists). Their labels are (1) Victor (1925 – 1930), (2) Okeh (1930), (3) Brunswick (1931 – 1935) and (4) Decca (1935 – 1936). It is appropriate not to include solo singles by Connee Boswell, because she has a much longer discography (107 singles, 214 songs)!
The Boswell Sisters consisted of Connee, Martha and Helvetia “Vet” Boswells, all born in New Orleans, who revolutionized close harmony singing and more or less invented it as a form of jazz. The Andrews Sisters started out as imitators of the Boswell Sisters. Young Ella Fitzgerald loved the Boswell Sisters and in particular idolized Connee, after whose singing style she patterned her own. This set is a nice introduction to the Boswell Sisters, but for the money, I would highly recommend the Acrobat Music set “Boswell Sisters Collection 1925-1936” (Acrobat Music, 2017, 2CDs, 50 songs with great sound). By the way, there is also a 5-CD set “Boswell Sisters Collection” (Storyville, 5CDs, 2015) with complete coverage, but apparently poor sound. I have ordered that set to complete my Singles Collection, and will review that when I receive it.