Tuesday, March 03, 2009

The eternal drawl and whine of the syncopated song

Scenes from a debate appearing in the letters column of the London Daily Herald, spring 1928.

The Tyranny of Jazz?

Are we never to get away from the eternal drawl and whine of the syncopated song—or whatever the row is called—which at present bulks so largely in the broadcast programmes?

‘Heaps of people must like it, though, seeing we get so much of it,’ say my friends. But when I ask whether they have ever met a single individual who admits to liking it they confess they cannot name one. And neither can I.

Yet, despite this evident want of appreciation. We are forcibly fed night after night with the terrible stuff. Cannot something be done to put us out of our misery? We might perhaps then get the chance to hear mere music for a change.

Eric T. Beckwith
Grimsdyke-crescent, Arkley, Herts.

(The Daily Herald, 3 May 1928, 4.)

The Tyranny of Jazz?

Mr. Beckwith says he cannot name any individual who likes jazz.

Well, I do, for one, and I shouldn’t be surprised if there were many more, if they took the trouble to inform him.

He also says it is a misery to him to listen to such stuff. Why does he listen to it? He isn’t forced to.

How many working men and women returning home at night, weary and tired, after doing a hard day’s work, want to listen to symphony concerts and so on? What they require is something more cheerful to liven them up and revive their spirits, not to make them drowsy and sleepy.

If it were put to the vote I am certain jazz would come out on top.

C. W. Margerison
Chorley-street, Warrington
[We have received several similar letters.—Ed., D.H.]

(The Daily Herald, 8 May 1928, 4.)

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