Last month (January, 2002) we looked at the emergence of the concept of hit songs and the early popular song hits from the period 1890 to 1910. In addition, we introduced a new "In Search Of" article that explores the history of American popular music and hit songs from the persepective of a contemprary author in 1910. In those features we saw how popular music emerged and grew into an entertainment phenomenon and experienced some of the lasting hits that came from those years.
This month we continue our two part look at enduring hits; classic American songs that have enjoyed continuous popularity for decades, and now, many for over a century! These are songs that are immediately recognized by a large part of the population. Songs that many people could sing with little or no coaching that somehow have become embedded in our culture and have transcended the times in which they were written.
This month we will provide a sampling of some of the most memorable
songs from the period 1910 - 1920, a period when American music blossomed like
never before and the number of hits each year grew by leaps and bounds. This
period, perhaps more than any other in our musical development, established
the pattern that would define American popular song for the future and resulted
in arguably, more enduring hits than any period before and after. We will offer
many new songs and point you to the many other hits we have already published.
In addition, we will conclude the "In Search Of" article from 1910
and add our own observations as to what make a lasting hit.
As with most of our features, this month's is covered on two separate pages to speed your downloads and to avoid a mile-long page. Be sure to see them BOTH to fully enjoy all of this month's music!
Works on Page One
Works on Page Two