Alreet (1938); Frontier Folksay (1977)

Benjamin Zimmer bgzimmer at RCI.RUTGERS.EDU
Wed Feb 9 06:32:54 UTC 2005

On Tue, 8 Feb 2005 23:59:21 -0500, Bapopik at AOL.COM wrote:

>Ben writes:
>"Reet, Petite, and Gone" (the Louis Jordan song and the movie of the same
>name) didn't appear until 1947.  More likely, the Down Beat article was
>referencing Cab Calloway's 1941 song "Are You All Reet?", a compendium of
>hep-cat slang...
>What about Gene Krupa?
>Title: Wire brush stomp
>Author(s): Krupa, Gene, 1909-1973.  (Performer - prf); O'Day, Anita. ;
(Performer - prf); Daye, Irene. ; (Performer - prf); DuLany, Howard. ;
(Performer - prf); Watson, Leo,; 1898-1950. ; (Performer - prf)
>Publication: [United States] :; Bandstand Records,
>Year: 1974, 1938
>Description: 1 sound disc :; analog, 33 1/3 rpm ;; 12 in.
>Language: English
>Music Type: Jazz; Multiple forms; Popular music
>Standard No: Publisher: BS-7117; Bandstand
>Contents: The madame swings it -- Jam on toast -- Bolero at the Savoy --
>Murdy purdy -- Nagasaki -- Some like it hot -- Meet the beat of my heart
>-- Marchetta -- Symphony in riffs -- Alreet -- Wire brush stomp -- Slow
>down -- Flamingo -- Manhattan transfer -- Watch the birdie -- The big do.

"Wire Brush Stomp" was evidently an LP that compiled recordings by Krupa
dating from 1938 to 1941.  Note the years on the album cover:

According to this seemingly authoritative site, "Alreet" was recorded in
March 1941:
  Gene Krupa & his Orchestra: New York, March 12, 1941
  CO-29921-1     Alreet - vAOD/aEH     Okeh 6118

I think "all reet" could have achieved WOTY status in 1941...  Besides
Krupa and Calloway, Duke Ellington and Earl Hines also used it that year:

   "Five O'Clock Drag" (Duke Ellington) - recorded Sept. 26, 1941
   Five O'clock Drag is jumpin'
   The drummer man's beat is thumpin';
   Five O'clock Drag is sumpin'
   That really does "all reet."'clock_drag.html

   "The Jitney Man" (Earl Hines) - recorded Nov. 17, 1941
   Oh, I can drive I can,
   Behind this wheel I'm the man,
   Take it easy in your seat,
   Everything will be all reet,
   I'm the jitney man!

Looks like Calloway was the trendsetter, though, as his song was recorded
on Jan. 16, 1941, according to <>.

--Ben Zimmer

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