#851 (11/21/15 - 12/4/15)

BLUE DECCA LABEL - PART FOUR
(OBSCURE ARTISTS - PART ONE)

"Beat It Out Bumpin' Boy"/
"In A Shanty In Old Shanty Town"
Royal Rhythm Boys
on Decca 2830 A/B
released in 1939

"Harlem After Midnight"
Boyce’s Harlem Serenaders
on Decca 8602 A
released in 1942


DECCA RECORDS:

The American version of Decca Records was incorporated in August 1934, naming Jack Kapp as President and Milton R. Rackmil as Treasurer and electing E. F. Stevens as Vice-President. Their first plant was opened on West 54th Street in New York City with eight presses. This original organization had less than 100 employees, including the executives, factory workers, office help, and salespeople.

Among the first artists signed were Bing Crosby, The Mills Brothers, Guy Lombardo, Ted Lewis, the Dorsey Brothers, and Jimmie Lunceford (all with releases in 1934). The first Decca record was released in October 1934: #100, two songs by Bing Crosby.

In 1940, production reached as much as 135,000 records a day, out of their three plants. The Decca catalog had grown to 7,000 selections.

In 1941, Decca purchased Brunswick Radio Corporation, including the catalogs of Brunswick, Vocalion and Melotone labels.

Decca's subsidiary label, Coral, was formed in 1948. At the same time, the Brunswick label was revived. Kapp died in March 1949 with Rackmil replacing him as President.

Decca's "8000" Sepia Series (actually starting with 8500) ran from 1940 to 1945. Decca also had a "7000" Rhythm & Blues Series that existed from 1934 to 1942. Wonder what Decca's criteria was for their 7000 "race" series versus their 8000 "sepia" series when they overlapped in 1940 - 1942. And why was one of the Royal Rhythm Boys records issued in the "7000" series and the other not?



Jack Kapp

E. F. Stevens

Milton Rackmil


EXTRA AUDIO (Windows Media Player):

AT LEFT: Richard Huey. This may or may not be the same person as on the following record. The picture is from 1945. The text with the picture states that "songs are by Richard Huey, featured singer in the hit musical 'Bloomer Girl'...."

The pictured Richard Huey and the Decca label were both located in New York City. Earlier in the 1940s, he had a radio show on WOR (Mutual Network) in NYC featuring the "Sheep and Goats Club." The Sheep were "spiritual" singers and the Goats were "boogie-woogie" singers, much in the contrasting flavor of the A and B sides of this record.

Listen to "Hurry Sundown" - Richard Huey And His Sundown Singers - Decca 8656 - 1944.

Did their name derive from the title of the above song?

Listen to "The Blues Boogie Woogie" - Richard Huey And His Sundown Singers - Decca 8656 - 1944.

This is their only known record.

[Audio restoration by Dave Saviet.]





Above: Label image of Decca 2830 recorded on October 23, 1939 and released in late 1939. This is the first of two releases by the Royal Rhythm Boys, both on Decca (1939/41), all four sides from the same session.

Per the book "Willie Dixon: Preacher of the Blues," the Royal Rhythm Boys consisted of Slam Stewart, Billy Moore and Jimmy Prince. Slam Stewart is playing the rather unique sounding bass fiddle on these sides, using a bow.

The "Beat It Out..." side was composed by Gene "Jimmy" Gilmore and Mayo Williams. Later on, Gilmore was a member of The Five Breezes and Four Jumps Of Jive with Willie Dixon. Williams was head of the "race records" section of Decca from 1934 to early 1945. Afterwards, he formed the Chicago, Southern, Harlem, and Ebony labels, all located in Chicago.



Above: Label image of Decca 8602 recorded on 10/9/41 and released in February 1942. Boyce's Harlem Serenaders consisted of Harold Boyce (piano), Harvey Davis (trumpet), Sid Grant (tenor sax), Joe Johnson (drums), and Gladstone Thomas (bass). This group had two releases, both on Decca (1941/42), all four sides from the same session. See below for audio from their first record.

Boyce had an earlier group with some of the same members, Harold Boyce And His Harlem Indians, who released three records on Decca (1939/40), all from the same 7/5/39 session.


EXTRA EXTRA AUDIO (Windows Media Player):

Listen to "Get In The Groove" - Boyce's Harlem Serenaders - Decca 8585 - 1941.
[Audio restoration by Dave Saviet.]


Listen to this week's selections featuring the Royal Rhythm Boys and Boyce’s Harlem Serenaders:
[Audio restoration by Dave Saviet.]

     A. Stream RealAudio...
 
          1. Beat It Out Bumpin' Boy - Royal Rhythm Boys
          2. In A Shanty In Old Shanty Town - Royal Rhythm Boys
          3. Harlem After Midnight - Boyce’s Harlem Serenaders
 
          ALL THREE played in sequence

     B. Download RealAudio...
 
          1. Beat It Out Bumpin' Boy - Royal Rhythm Boys
          2. In A Shanty In Old Shanty Town - Royal Rhythm Boys
          3. Harlem After Midnight - Boyce’s Harlem Serenaders

     C. Stream/Download Media Player...
 
          1. Beat It Out Bumpin' Boy - Royal Rhythm Boys
          2. In A Shanty In Old Shanty Town - Royal Rhythm Boys
          3. Harlem After Midnight - Boyce’s Harlem Serenaders

      [To download audio files, right-click on link and then select "Save (Link) Target As..."]

Click HERE for BLUE DECCA LABEL - PART FIVE (OBSCURE ARTISTS - PART TWO).
(Above link will open in a separate window)


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