The Swing Era

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"My audience was my life. What I did and how I did it, was all for my audience", these words came from the well known and never forgotten Cab Calloway. His style and mix of blues, swing and scat spread like wildfire and filled many peoples lives with joy, excitement and happiness. Cab Calloway broke the boundaries of racial barriers and become a very popular and influential household name. As stated in the Jazz Profiles from NPR, " A truly "larger than life" figure in American pop culture...Calloway also led one of the greatest bands of the Swing Era" (Ossman). Cab Calloway arose from an era where racism against black jazz musicians was present and drug addiction seemed to consume the majority of these musicians ' lives. It was no surprise that Cab Calloway pursued a career as an entertainer. He grew up in a family that consisted of musicians and performers, although it was expected that he would follow in his fathers foot steps and become a lawyer. Around the mid to late 1920s Cab Calloway assembled his own band and they were known as the Alabamians. Although his time with the Alabamians was short lived, he eventually became bandleader of a big band called the Missourians. Cab Calloway and the Missourians became an instant hit and sensation. They performed in popular clubs such as Savoy Theater and The Cotton Club. As stated in the article Cab Calloway and The Cotton Club written by Kinsley Suer, "Cab quickly became so popular that his band, which had been
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