I'm pretty sure you know the song “Blue Skies“.
It was composed by Irving Berlin in 1926 for the musical “Betsy“. The show was a disaster and closed after only 39 performances but the song was an instant success.
On October 6, 1927, the first feature-length motion picture with sound “The Jazz Singer” starring vocalist Al Jolson premiered and “Blue Skies” was one of the nine tunes performed by Jolson. The film was a huge success and brought the song to the attention of millions.
Ever Since, “Blues Skies” was a success in several other films and it was recorded countless times.
One of these recordings is by
Cyril McDonald Blake (1897 – Dec. 3, 1951), originally from Trinidad (British West Indies), was an essential part of the music scene of England in the decades both before and after World War II.
Around 1918, he arrived in England and was one of the guitarists in the Southern Syncopated Orchestra. While being in the band, he switched to trumpet.
During the 1920s, he worked in Paris and in London
In the 1930s, Blake lived and played in different bands (Leon Abbey, Happy Blake, Rudolph Dunbar, Leslie Thompson, Joe Appleton, and Lauderic Caton) in London.
In 1938, he started his own band and Jig's Club in Soho became a venue associated almost completely with Blake.
He recorded several times under the name Cyril Blake & His Jig's Club Band. In December 1941, the band was recorded live at Jig‘s Club by Parlophone.
In the 1940s, Blake led his band behind Lord Kitchener for recordings on Parlophone Records, playing in a calypso style. Then he returned to Trinidad, where he continued to lead bands. He died in 1951 because of illness.
[easyazon-image align=”left” asin=”B003KXM6PG” locale=”us” height=”160″ src=”https://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61YeI0LEawL._SL160_.jpg” width=”160″]Title: [easyazon-link asin=”B003KXOB04″ locale=”us”]Blue Skies[/easyazon-link]
Artist: Cyril Blake And His Jig's Club Band
Recorded: December 1941
Album: [easyazon-link asin=”B003KXM6PG” locale=”us”]Anthology of British Vintage Jazz, Volume 3[/easyazon-link]
Tempo: 210 bpm
Dance: Balboa, Lindy Hop
Click the link to download the song at
iTunes EU ･ iTunes US ･ [easyazon-link asin=”B003KX49X8″ locale=”de”]Amazon DE[/easyazon-link] ･ [easyazon-link asin=”B003KXOB04″ locale=”us”]Amazon US[/easyazon-link] ･ [easyazon-link asin=”B003KWSYHQ” locale=”uk”]Amazon UK[/easyazon-link]･ emusic
How do you like this version of “Blues Skies”? What do you think about the Series “Song of the Week”? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!
Every Monday, I post a new “Song of the Week“.
You can find the songs also on my Spotify playlist or on 8tracks.
Song of the Week #138: “Minor Jive” by Roy Eldridge
Song of the Week #137: “Skinny Minne” by Glenn Crytzer & His Syncopators
Song of the Week #136: “There Ain’t No Sweet Man That’s Worth The Salt Of My Tears” by Diana Krall
Song of the Week #135: “Moten Swing” by Bennie Moten's Kansas City Orchestra
Song of the Week #134: “I Ain't Got Nobody” by Lew Stone