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25 July 2023

(Until 25 July)

US Vice President Charles G Dawes Writes Hit Pop Song

Greg Poppleton's Phantom Dancer swing jazz radio show

It’s All in the Game is a hit pop song and this week’s Phantom Dancer feature. It’s the only pop song wriiten by a US Vice President and Nobel Prize laureate. His name is Charles G Dawes and he ended up hating the song.

The Phantom Dancer is your weekly non-stop mix of swing and jazz from live 1920s-60s radio and TV every week.

LISTEN to this week’s Phantom Dancer mix (online after 2pm AEST, Tuesday 25 July) and weeks of Phantom Dancer mixes online at, at https://2ser.com/phantom-dancer/

CHARLES G

It’s All in the Game” became a pop song in the 1950s when a new title and lyrics were added to an instrumental composition, “Melody in A Major“, written by Charles G. Dawes, written in 1911.

Charles G. Dawes was Vice President of the United States under Calvin Coolidge. It is the only No. 1 single in the U.S. to have been co-written by a U.S. Vice President or a Nobel Peace Prize laureate (Dawes was both).

The song has become a pop standard, with cover versions by dozens of artists, including this week’s 1953 live radio Phantom Dancer version.

DAWES

Charles G. Dawes, a Chicago bank president and amateur pianist and flautist, composed the tune in a single sitting at his lakeshore home in Evanston.

He played it for a friend, the violinist Francis MacMillen, who took Dawes’s sheet music to a publisher.

Dawes, known for his federal appointments and a United States Senate candidacy, was surprised to find a portrait of himself in a music shop window with copies of the tune for sale.

Charles G. Dawes quipped, “I know that I will be the target of my punster friends. They will say that if all the notes in my bank are as bad as my musical ones, they are not worth the paper they were written on.”

The tune, often dubbed “Dawes’s Melody”, followed him into politics, and Charles G. Dawes grew to detest hearing it wherever he appeared. It was a favorite of violinist Fritz Kreisler, who used it as his closing number, and in the 1940s it was picked up by musicians such as Tommy Dorsey.

IT’S ALL IN THE GAME

In mid-1951, the year Charles G. Dawes died, (in April), songwriter Carl Sigman had an idea for a song, and Dawes’s “Melody” struck him as suitable for his sentimental lyrics.

It was recorded that year by Dinah Shore, Sammy Kaye and Carmen Cavallaro, but the first release was by Tommy Edwards in August. Edwards’s version reached No. 18 on the Billboard Records Most Played by Disc Jockeys survey dated September 15, 1951.

The range of the melody would have been “difficult to sing”, so required rearrangement.

A jazz arrangement was recorded by Louis Armstrong (vocals) and arranger Gordon Jenkins, with “some of Armstrong’s most honey-tinged singing”. In 1956, Jenkins would produce a version with Nat King Cole along the same lines.

In 1958, Edwards had only one session left on his MGM contract. Stereophonic sound recording was becoming viable and it was decided to cut a stereo version of “It’s All in the Game” with a rock and roll arrangement. The single was released in July and became a hit, reaching number one for six weeks beginning September 29, 1958, making Edwards the first African-American to chart at number one on the Billboard Hot 100. It would also be the last song to hit number one on the R&B Best Seller list. In November, the song hit No. 1 on the UK Singles Chart.

25 July PLAY LIST

Play List – The Phantom Dancer
107.3 2SER-FM Sydney
LISTEN ONLINE Community Radio Network Show CRN #608

107.3 2SER Tuesday 25 July 2023
12:04 – 2:00pm (+10 hours GMT)
National Program
5UV Adelaide Monday 2:30 – 3:30am
5GTR Mt Gambier Monday 2:30 – 3:30am
3MBR Murrayville Monday 3 – 4am
4NAG Keppel FM Monday 3 – 4am
2MIA Griffith Monday 3 – 4am
2BAR Edge FM Bega Monday 3 – 4am
2BRW Braidwood Monday 3 – 4am
2YYY Young Monday 3 – 4am
7RPH Hobart Monday 3 – 4am
3VKV Alpine Radio Monday 6 – 7pm
7MID Oatlands Monday 3am – 4 and 6 -7pm
2MCE Bathurst Wednesday 9 – 10am
1ART ArtsoundFM Canberra Friday 10 – 11am
and Sunday 11pm
Reading Radio (QLD) Friday 1am – 2
2RRR Ryde Friday 11am – 12
2ARM Armidale Friday 12 – 1pm
5LCM Lofty FM Adelaide Friday 1 – 2pm
6GME Radio Goolarri Broome Saturday 4am – 5am
Denmark FM (West Australia) Saturday 10 – 11am
Repeat: Wednesdays 10 – 11pm
7LTN Launceston Sunday 5 – 6am
3MGB Mallacoota Sunday 5 – 6am
3BBR West Gippsland Sunday 5 – 6pm
2SEA Sapphire Coast Eden Sunday 9 – 10pm

Set 1
Eddy Howard
Open + Love Every Moment You Live
Eddy Howard Orchestra (voc) Eddy Howard & Trio
‘One Night Stand’
Aragon Ballroom
Chicago
AFRS Re-broadcast
1955
Easy to Love
Eddy Howard Orchestra
‘One Night Stand’
Aragon Ballroom
Chicago
AFRS Re-broadcast
1955
Where You Are
Eddy Howard Orchestra (voc) Eddy Howard & Trio
‘One Night Stand’
Aragon Ballroom
Chicago
AFRS Re-broadcast
1955
Caravan + Alexander’s Ragtime BandEddy Howard Orchestra
‘One Night Stand’
Aragon Ballroom
Chicago
AFRS Re-broadcast
1955
Set 2
Country
Open + Sweethearts Forever (theme) + Tell Him I’m Blue
Red Foley and the Dawn Busters (voc) Eva
‘Quick Elastic Show’
WLS Chicago
12 May 1945
Poor Little Me
Red Foley and the Dawn Busters (voc) Eva
‘Quick Elastic Show’
WLS Chicago
12 May 1945
I’m in Love with the Mother of My Best Girl
Red Foley and the Dawn Busters (voc) Red Foley
‘Quick Elastic Show’
WLS Chicago
12 May 1945
Song of the West + Just a Prayer Away + Sweethearts Forever (theme)
Red Foley and the Dawn Busters (voc) Red Foley & Eva
‘Quick Elastic Show’
WLS Chicago
12 May 1945
Set 3
Feature Song
IT’S ALL IN THE GAME
The Early Birds Orchestra
‘The Early Birds’
WFAA Dallas
29 Apr 1953
A Kid Named Joe
The Early Birds Orchestra with vocal
‘The Early Birds’
WFAA Dallas
29 Apr 1953
The Bells of St Mary’s + Close
Piano solo‘The Early Birds’
WFAA Dallas
29 Apr 1953
Set 4
Duke Ellington
West Indian Dance
Duke Ellington Orchestra
‘A Date with the Duke’
Boston ABC
14 Jun 1945
Tonight I Shall Sleep
Duke Ellington Orchestra (piano) Billy Strayhorn (voc) Al Hibbler
‘A Date with the Duke’
Boston ABC
14 Jun 1945
Stomp, Look and Listen
Duke Ellington Orchestra
‘A Date with the Duke’
Boston ABC
14 Jun 1945
I’m Beginning to See the Light (theme)
Duke Ellington Orchestra
‘A Date with the Duke’
Boston ABC
14 Jun 1945
Set 5
Tony Bennett
Dark Eyes
Gene Krupa Quartet (voc) Tony Bennett
‘Guard Session’
Radio Transcription
1963
Have I Told You Lately?
Gene Krupa Quartet (voc) Tony Bennett
‘Guard Session’
Radio Transcription
1963
April in Paris
Gene Krupa Quartet (voc) Tony Bennett
‘Guard Session’
Radio Transcription
1963
Flying Home
Gene Krupa Quartet
‘Guard Session’
Radio Transcription
1963
Set 6
Billie Holiday
Fine and Mellow
Billie Holiday
‘Art Ford Jazz Party’
WNTA TV NYC
18 Jul 1958
I Cover the Waterfront
Billie Holiday
Storyville
Copley Square hotel
WHDH Boston
Oct 1953
You Better Go Now
Billie Holiday (voc) Percy Faith Orchestra
‘Woolworth Hour’
KNX CBS LA
1950s
Them There Eyes
Billie Holiday (voc) Percy Faith Orchestra
‘Woolworth Hour’
KNX CBS LA
1950s
Set 7
This is Jazz
Way Down Yonder in New Orleans (theme) + Sensation Rag
Muggsy Spanier
‘This is Jazz’
WOR Mutual NYC
22 Mar 1947
You’re Some Pretty Doll
Muggsy Spanier‘This is Jazz’
WOR Mutual NYC
22 Mar 1947
Twelth Street Rag
Art Hodes
‘This is Jazz’
WOR Mutual NYC
22 Mar 1947
Buddy Bolden’s Blues
Muggsy Spanier
‘This is Jazz’
WOR Mutual NYC
22 Mar 1947
Set 8
Modern Jazz
Twilight in Teheran
Buck Ram All Stars
Comm Rec
NYC
18 Sep 1944
Nuts to NotesHot Lips Page
Comm Rec
NYC
12 Sep 1944
Moppin’ the Blues
Pete Brown Quintette
Comm Rec
NYC
11 Jul 1944
All Gigs
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm
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