Swing Music

Swing music, or simply swing, is a form of American music that dominated in the 1930's and 1940's. Swing uses a strong rhythm section of double bass and drums as the anchor for a lead section of brass instruments such as trumpets and trombones, woodwinds including saxophone and clarinets, and sometimes stringed instruments such as violin and guitar, medium to fast tempos, and a "lilting" swing time rhythm. The name swing came from the 'swing feel' where the emphasis is on the off-beat or weaker pulse in the music. Swing bands usually featured soloists who would improvise on the melody over the arrangement. The danceable swing style of big bands and bandleaders such as Benny Goodman was the dominant form of American popular music from 1935 to 1946, a period known as the swing era. The verb "to swing" is also used as a term of praise for playing that has a strong groove or drive. Notable musicians of the swing era include Louis Armstrong, Cab Calloway, Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington, Glenn Miller, Count Basie, Woody Herman, and Artie Shaw.

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