Rhythm and Blues was not generally recognised as a distinct musical genre until the years following the end of World War II.
These 4CD sets centred on 1940-1944 attempt to pinpoint records typical of the various strands of music which coalesced into what can now be seen as a historically definable form of black popular music, commonly abbreviated to R&B. Previously, the American record industry had marketed blues, jazz, jug band, hokum, sacred and novelty music under the catch-all phrase, race music. After the war, an increasing sensitivity to racism generated the need for a new term which emerged from a renaming of Billboard‰۪s Best Selling Retail Rhythm And Blues Records. A new audience for blues was opening up amongst white record buyers and concertgoers, due to the enormous popularity of boogie-woogie, which was first recorded in jazz band format in 1936 and was by 1940 at the height of its popularity. This period saw the end of mass recording of discs in the downhome and urban blues styles and these artists were largely absent from the studios until the late 1940s, when the electric guitar became the instrument of choice for blues singers. America‰۪s entry into the Second World War had the effect of limiting the supply of shellac, which was essential to the manufacture of records. As a result, the number of discs released was severely curtailed and many were only issued to jukebox owners. The unforeseen result of this recording hiatus was a breathing space for the development of two new forms of music that broke through after the end of the war: Rhythm and Blues and bebop.åÊ
Volume two: 1942-1944.
Disc One - 1. Duke Ellington - The "C" Jam Blues 2. Louis Jordan - What's The Use Of Getting Sober 3. Jimmy Lunceford - Blues In The Night 4. Lucky Millinder - Little John Special 5. Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup - Mean Ol' Frisco 6. Ella Mae Morse - Cow Cow Boogie 7. Bea Booze - See See Rider Blues 8. Big Bill Broonzy - I Feel So Good 9. T-Bone Walker - Mean Old World 10. Louis Jordan - Five Guys Named Moe 11. Lionel Hampton Orchestra - Flying Home 12. Peggy Lee - Why Don't You Do Right 13. Nat King Cole - Pitchin' Up A Boogie 14. Andy Kirk And His Clouds Of Joy - Hey Lawdy Mama 15. Big Joe Williams - Baby Please Don't Go 16. Louis Jordan - Deacon Jones 17. Champion Jack Dupree - Big Time Mama 18. Andy Kirk And His Clouds Of Joy - Take It And Git 19. Big Joe Turner - Blues In The Night 20. Golden Gate Jubilee Quartet - Didn't It Rain 21. Dinah Washington - Evil Gal Blues 22. Lucky Millinder w Sister Rosetta Tharpe - I Want A Tall Skinny Papa 23. John Lee "Sonny Boy" Williamson - She Don't Love Me That Way 24. T-Bone Walker - I Got A Break, Baby 25. Johnny Hodges - Things Ain't What They Used To Be 26. Saunders King - SK Blues Part 1
Disc Two - 1. Savannah Churchill And Her All Star Seven - Fat Meat Is Good Meat 2. Doctor Clayton - Ain't No Business We Can Do 3. Earl Hines - Stormy Monday Blues 4. Lucky Millinder w Sister Rosetta Tharpe - That's All 5. Edmond Hall - Downtown Cafe Boogie 6. The Four Vagabonds - Coming In On A Wing And A Prayer 7. Nat King Cole - That Ain't Right 8. Helen Humes - Unlucky Woman 9. Louis Jordan - You Can't Get That No More 10. Fats Waller - Moppin' And Boppin' 11. John Kirby - St. Louis Blues 12. Tampa Red & Big Maceo - Let Me Play With Your Poodle 13. Charlie Barnet - Oh Miss Jaxson 14. Lucky Millinder & His Orchestra ‰ÛÒ Savoy 15. Jay McShann And His Orchestra - Jumpin' Blues 16. Roy Eldridge - Minor Jive 17. Bonnie Davies - Don't Stop Now 18. Nat King Cole - Hit That Jive, Jack 19. Count Basie - Rusty Dusty Blues 20. Buddy Johnson - You'll Get Them Blues 21. Washboard Sam & His Washboard Band - Gonna Hit The Highway 22. Lucky Millinder & His Orchestra - Apollo Jump 23. Erskine Hawkins - Don't Cry Baby 24. Slim & Slam - Groove Juice Special 25. The Charioteers ‰ÛÒ Amen 26. Woody Herman ‰ÛÒ Amen
Disc Three - 1. T-Bone Walker - T-Bone Boogie 2. Louis Jordan - Is You Is Or Is You Ain't My baby? 3. Duke Ellington - Main Stem 4. Julia Lee With Jay McShann - Come On Over To My House 5. Sepia Tones - Boogie No 1 6. Cozy Cole ‰ÛÒ Jericho 7. Buddy Johnson - Fine Brown Frame 8. Lionel Hampton - Hamps Boogie Woogie No 1 9. Dinah Washington - Salty Papa Blues 10. Nat King Cole Trio - Gee Baby, Ain't I Good To You 11. Edmond Hall - Besame Mucho 12. The Dixie Hummingbirds - Book Of The Seven Seas 13. Etta Jones - Blow Top Blues 14. Albert Ammons - Boogie Rocks 15. The Three Barons - Milk Shake Stand 16. Hot Lips Page - The Sheik of Araby 17. Billy Eckstine - Blowin' The Blues Away 18. T-Bone Walker - Mean Old World Blues 19. Coleman Brothers - Low Down The Chariot 20. Ella Johnson w Buddy Johnson - That's The Stuff You Gotta Watch 21. The Five Red Caps - Boogie Woogie On A Saturday Night 22. Tampa Red - Sure Enough I Do 23. Ella Fitzgerald - Cow Cow Boogie 24. Ike Quebec - Blue Harlem 25. Lester Young - Lester Leaps Again 26. Jimmie Lunceford - Back Door Stuff Part 1.
Disc Four - 1. Cozy Cole - Nice And Cozy 2. Benny Carter - Hurry Hurry 3. Louis Jordan - G.I. Jive 4. Etta Jones - Evil Gal Blues 5. Errol Garner - Boogie Woogie Boogie 6. T-Bone Walker - Sail On Boogie 7. Cootie Williams - Tess's Torch SongåÊ 8. Ernestine B Washington - If I Could Just Make It In 9. Nat King Cole Trio - Pro-Sky 10. Louis Jordan - I'm Gonna Move To The Outskirts Of Town 11. Hot Lips Page - The Blues Jumped The Rabbit 12. Nat King Cole Trio - Straighten Up and Fly Right 13. Lester Young - Blue Lester 14. Buddy Johnson - When My Man Comes Home 15. Cecil Gant - Cecil's Boogie 16. T-Bone Walker - You Don't Love Me Blues 17. Leadbelly - The House Of The Rising Sun 18. Delta Rhythm Boys - Do Nothin' Till You Hear From Me 19. The Five Red Caps - Boogie Woogie Ball 20. Helen Humes - I Would If I Could 21. Lester Young - Jump Lester Jump 22. Louis Jordan - Ration Blues 23. The Mills Brothers - Till Then 24. Buddy Johnson - One Of Them Good Ones 25. Billie Holiday - I Love My Man 26. T-Bone Walker - Low Down Dirty Shame 27. Wee Bea Booze - These Young Men Blues