Swing Along
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A major release of this unjustly neglected composer's songs.

Will Marion Cook was one of the earliest African-American composers to achieve significant commercial success in musical theater. However, even though his talents were admired at the turn of the twentieth century, he and his work have since been largely forgotten. With the interest in African-American culture sparked by the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s, and revived interest in all American music during the Bicentennial celebrations of the 1970s, Cook has been rediscovered by such music historians as Thomas L. Riis and Marva Griffin Carter, as well as by such performers as the Black Music Repertory Ensemble of the Center for Black Music Research and, of course, tenor William Brown, who had previously recorded some of Cook's songs on the album Fi-yer! (TROY329). Having studied with Joseph Joachim in Berlin and Antonin Dvorak in New York City, Cook was respected for his pioneering achievements in popular songwriting, Black musical comedies and syncopated orchestral music. His career as a songwriter spanned some 40 years from 1893 to 1934. Cook's memoirs reveal that he believed his ultimate challenge was to right social injustice while at the same time creating beautiful music. Renowned tenor William Brown's repertoire encompassed practically all musical genres. He was a particularly avid performer of American music from all ages and had appeared with major orchestras and ensembles all over the world. Sadly, Mr. Brown died shortly after this recording was made. This CD is a tribute to the memories of both Cook and Brown.
Contents:
Will Marion Cook, composer
Pensacola Mooch
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Love is The Tend'rest of Themes
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Jump Back
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
My Lady's Lips
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Wid De Moon, Moon, Moon
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Bon Bon Buddy
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Returned
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Down in Lover's Lane
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Red Red Rose
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Swing Along
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
An Exhortation
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Rain Song
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Troubled in Mind
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
An Explanation
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Little Gypsy Maid
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
My Lady
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Springtime
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Who Dat Say Chicken in Dis Crowd
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Dreamin' Town
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
There's A Place in the Old Vacant Chair
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Darktown Barbecue
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Slumber Song
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Little Bit of Heaven
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
Mammy
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
As The Sunflower Turns To the Sun
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Will Marion Cook, composer
On Emancipation Day
William Brown, tenor, Ann Sears, piano

Review:
"There's a reason this music was so popular in its day, and the CD is a pleasure from beginning to end." (AfroAmericanHeritage.com)
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