Monday, October 19, 2009

The Ingenues: An All-Girl Jazz Band From 1928

For Music Monday, here's one of the first all-female jazz bands - The Ingenues, in a Vitaphone film from 1928. This was still technically the silent movie era, so I suspect that there was a separate musical track played in sync with the film (the first talkie, Al Jolson's The Jazz Singer, would not be out until the following year).

Also known as The Band Beautiful, these amazing women toured from the mid-1920s to the late 1930s -  first in vaudeville and movie theaters in the Midwest, then nationally on the Orpheum circuit (one of the top vaudeville circuits of the 1920s). In the 1930s the band was led by Louise Sorenson, a trumpet player who was so versatile, she also played every other instrument in the band! It looks like most of the women played several instruments - including the accordion (they all have one of these at their feet).

The song is "Sweeping the Cobwebs Off the Moon." It's great music- and I love the flapper hair and fashions, too!



A longer clip of The Ingenues from the same year is here on YouTube. And another version of "Sweeping the Cobwebs off the Moon" is here, as played by Waring's Pennsylvanians in 1927.

Thanks to JMHare for the 1920s sheet music cover of the song.

4 comments:

Tori Lennox said...

That was great!!! I wonder if they ever played Los Angeles...

Lidian said...

Tori - I'm not sure - I think the Orpheum circuit was the Midwest and eastern seaboard...But I will have to check.

Georgina said...

I love the drummer in the back. She's just looks so into her drumming. All of them look amazing. Can you imagine being backstage after that show! - G

Lidian said...

Georgina - I like the drummer too - and the tuba player! They are all so cool, and they look like they're having such a great time :)