Enduring American Song Hits

The Best Of American Popular Song,
Part Two 1910 - 1920

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 publish the conclusion of 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!

Go To Page One Of This Month's Feature

Works on Page One
Put Your Arms Around Me Honey, 1910
Oh! You Beautiful Doll, 1911
Melancholy (My Melancholy Baby), 1912
Ballin' The Jack
, 1913
They Didn't Believe Me
Memories, 1915

Go To Page Two Of This Month's Feature

Works on Page Two
Ireland Must Be Heaven, For My Mother Came From There, 1916
For Me And My Gal
, 1917
After You've Gone, 1918
I'm Always Chasing Rainbows, 1918
Ja-Da, 1918
Look For The Silver Lining, 1920

Parlor Songs is an educational website about American popular music and the history of the genre

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