17 Best Songs From 1934

Best Songs From 1934

From big band hits to timeless ballads, music in 1934 had a lot to offer. With plenty of household names and emerging future stars, here are the best songs from 1934.

“MoonGlow” By Benny Goodman

Song year: 1934

“MoonGlow” by Benny Goodman remains a remarkable classic that captured the hearts of many in 1934. This swing music hit, which is considered one of the great jazz standards, became an instant favorite among fans of big band music.

The original recording featured Benny Goodman and celebrated jazz musicians Lionel Hampton and Mary Lou Williams. Its first live performance took place on August 25th, 1934, with Valaida and Dee Lloyd McKaye captivating audiences with their rendition.

Over time, “Moon Glow” continued to garner recognition for its timeless appeal; eventually earning a spot as #74 on the list of 100 greatest songs from the 1930s as well as being included in Benny Goodman And His Orchestra's album – “1934-1935”.

MoonGlow By Benny Goodman

“Continental (You Kiss While You're Dancing)” By Leo Reisman

Song year: 1934

“Continental (You Kiss While You're Dancing)” by Leo Reisman is a fantastic example of 1930s dance music that effortlessly captures the energetic spirit of swing and jazz.

Leo Reisman and his orchestra were renowned for their top-charting songs during this era, including “The Wedding of the Painted Doll.” The band's rendition of “Continental (You Kiss While You're Dancing)” even inspired other contemporary musicians like Will Osborne to record their own versions.

“Tumbling Tumbleweeds” By the Sons of the Pioneers

Song year: 1934

A true classic in the Western music genre, “Tumbling Tumbleweeds” was composed by Bob Nolan, a founding member of The Sons of the Pioneers.

The significance and popularity of “Tumbling Tumbleweeds” are evident not only in its success for The Sons of the Pioneers but also through various cover versions by other artists.

Some noteworthy renditions include those by Foy Willing and The Riders of the Purple Sage, as well as Don Pablo's orchestra featuring Bunny Paul on vocals.

“Smoke Gets in Your Eyes” By Paul Whiteman

Song year: 1934

Written by Jerome Kern and Otto Harbach for the musical “Roberta,” this show tune became a massive hit, charting at #1 on the US Billboard.

Paul Whiteman was among the top bandleaders of the 1920s and '30s, with his orchestra recording many hit songs. His distinctive sound blended jazz, pop, and classical music, making him a favorite among audiences.

This classic song remains beloved today as it crosses generations and continues to be played by many worldwide musicians.

“Cocktails for Two” By Duke Ellington

Song year: 1934

“Duke Ellington” is a renowned name in jazz music, and “Cocktails for Two” is one of his most famous compositions. The song was originally created for a film where Duke's band had a role; it later became widely popular among the masses.

Released as a jazz single in 1934 under the Victor label, “Cocktails for Two” quickly gained immense popularity – it was a best-seller in May.

“Cocktails For Two,” which features Duke Ellington's signature swing sound, has become an essential piece from this era because of its lively qualities. The arrangement showcases masterful musicianship by Duke's orchestra members, highlighting their skills with different instruments like trumpets, saxophones, etc., according to what each track requires.

Today several albums include “Cocktails For Two,” including CD releases containing eight tracks from multiple performers who stood out during that era.

Cocktails for Two By Duke Ellington

“The Very Thought of You” By Ray Noble

Song year: 1934

“The Very Thought of You” by Ray Noble is a timeless classic first recorded in 1934. It quickly became one of the most beloved love songs ever and has been covered countless times by various artists throughout history.

Ray Noble was an English composer who succeeded greatly with “The Very Thought of You.” He wrote numerous hit songs during his career, but this tune remains one of his most well-known contributions to the Great American Songbook.

Sheet music for “The Very Thought Of You” can be found in choral arrangements or solo vocal performances today. This allows anyone interested in singing or playing this timeless classic to do so easily.

“Love in Bloom” By Bing Crosby

Song year: 1934

“Love in Bloom” by Bing Crosby is a romantic ballad that became very popular during the Golden Age of Hollywood. Bing Crosby, the crooner, covered the song with Irving Aaronson and His Commanders in 1934.

The song appeared in the film “She Loves Me Not”, which was released the same year.

The popularity of “Love in Bloom” can be attributed to its association with big band music, musical films, nostalgia for Tin Pan Alley standards, and jazz classics like Rhapsody in Blue.

This song has become an anthem for lovers everywhere and remains one of Bing Crosby's most beloved hits.

To this day, “Love In Bloom” is still regarded as one of the greatest love songs ever made. Its soulful tunes inspire singers all over who want to recreate some magic from yesteryears' golden era.

“Winter Wonderland” By Guy Lombardo

Song year: 1934

“Winter Wonderland” by Guy Lombardo is one of the best songs from 1934 and remains a beloved holiday classic. The song was written by Felix Bernard and Richard B where after smith and recorded by Guy Lombardo in 1934.

ASCAP lists “Winter Wonderland” as one of the most-performed holiday songs, with countless covers and adaptations over the years from artists such as Gord Bamford and Andrews Sisters with Guy Lombardo and his Orchestra.

Whether decorating your tree or enjoying a cup of hot cocoa by the fireplace, “Winter Wonderland” is essential to any festive playlist.

“June in January” By Bing Crosby

Song year: 1934

“June in January” is a timeless classic from 1934 and one of the best songs of that year. It was written by Ralph Rainger with lyrics that exude romance and nostalgia, making it an instant hit among audiences worldwide.

Bing Crosby introduced the song in the film “Here Is My Heart,” captivating listeners with his melodic voice and iconic style.

The song’s melody is unforgettable, featuring orchestral arrangements by Georgie Stoll and His Orchestra, which helped to create an intimate sound that remains popular to this day.

“June in January” has since been covered by countless artists who have sought to recreate its magic.

For those seeking music nostalgia or interested in listening to old classics, “June In January” is definitely worth checking out.

June in January By Bing Crosby

“Honeysuckle Rose” By Fats Waller

Song year: 1934

“Honeysuckle Rose” is one of Fats Waller's most famous song idea compositions and a well-known jazz standard. The song was composed by Fats Waller himself in 1929, with lyrics penned by Andy Razaf.

It became a hit when featured in the show “Load of Coal,” performed by five African-American actors in Harlem theater.

The single for “Honeysuckle Rose” was released on Victor Records with his band, His Rhythm, in December 1934 and received widespread critical acclaim from audiences worldwide.

The sheet music is part of Fats Waller's collection, which includes materials generated and kept by Philip L., who managed to preserve a lot of his works before they were destroyed or lost over time.

Fats Waller copyrighted over 100 of his compositions as a musician, including fan favorites such as “Ain't Misbehavin” and this very track, ‘Honeysuckle Rose.'

“Let's Fall in Love” By Eddy Duchin

Song year: 1934

“Let's Fall in Love” by Eddy Duchin is a timeless classic that holds up even today as one of the best songs from 1934. The song was composed by Harold Arlen and Ted Koehler, two legendary names in American music, and it showcases the titular performer's incredible talent as a pianist.

Moreover, “Let's Fall in Love” remains popular even today thanks to various remasters that have been created over time. Fans of jazz music will appreciate how this song exemplifies the big band era with its swing-style arrangement and dynamic instrumentation.

“Stars Fell On Alabama” By Guy Lombardo

Song year: 1934

“Stars Fell on Alabama” by Guy Lombardo is a classic jazz composition that became popular in 1934. The song was first recorded by Lombardo and his orchestra, featuring beautiful harmonies and skilled instrumental solos.

The success of “Stars Fell on Alabama” catapulted it to become one of the best songs from 1934. Notably, the song was later covered by legendary jazz musician Louis Armstrong and his group, The All Stars.

Overall, “Stars Fell on Alabama” remains an important piece of American music history as part of the jazz standards repertoire.

Stars Fell On Alabama By Guy Lombardo

“42nd Street” By Don Bestor & His Orchestra

Song year: 1934

“42nd Street” by Don Bestor & his Orchestra is a high-energy swing music piece that perfectly captures the essence of New York's famous 42nd Street. The song was featured in the musical film “42nd Street,” which brought to life the glamor and grit of Broadway during the Great Depression era.

The popularity of “42nd Street” reflects not only the resilience and optimism of Americans during tough economic times but also their love for musical theater. The song's inclusion in the film soundtrack and on popular radio shows helped it gain widespread attention.

Ultimately, “42nd Street” remains an important piece of American cultural history and a testament to what can be achieved through collaborative efforts between musicians and other artists across different mediums – from films to stage productions – in creating truly memorable works that stand the test of time.

“The Carioca” By Enric Madriguera & His Orchestra

Song year: 1934

“The Carioca” is a Latin-inspired song popularized by Enric Madriguera and his Orchestra in 1934. The upbeat rhythm of “The Carioca” made it an instant hit, with the song becoming a chart-topper and best-seller within weeks of its release.

Apart from “The Carioca,” Enric Madriguera's album “Carioca! Hits, Latin Magic And More 1932-47” features all his 19 career chart entries, including other Top 10 hits like “It Was So Beautiful, “Orchids In The Moonlight,” and “True.” These songs showcased Madriguera's mastery of orchestration, making him one of the most celebrated bandleaders of his time.

Overall, “The Carioca” by Enric Madriguera & his Orchestra remains one of the most famous songs from the era because it embodies both classic jazz styles and modern beats through its catchy melody.

“I Only Have Eyes for You” By Scott Wood & His Orchestra

Song year: 1934

“I Only Have Eyes For You” is a timeless love song that has stood the test of time. Written in 1934 by Harry Warren and Al Dubin, it was first recorded by Ben Selvin and his Orchestra.

The romantic ballad tells the story of someone completely captivated by their lover. It's been covered numerous times, including renditions from Joni James and The Flamingos.

“Speak to Me of Love (Parlez-Moi D'amour)” By Lucienne Boyer

Song year: 1934

“Speak to Me of Love (Parlez-Moi D'amour)” by Lucienne Boyer is one of the most famous French chansons of all time. Released in 1934, it quickly became a hit and has remained popular ever since.

Boyer's interpretation of “Speak to Me of Love (Parlez-Moi D'amour)” was so powerful that it even inspired an American version with English lyrics. The song was featured in several films throughout the years, including “The Big Pond,” starring Maurice Chevalier and Claudette Colbert.

“Old Spinning Wheel” By Ray Noble

Song year: 1934

“Old Spinning Wheel” by Ray Noble was undoubtedly one of the most popular songs of 1934. The beautiful ballad was written by Billy Hill and recorded by Noble and his orchestra in the same year.

With its gentle melody and romantic lyrics, “Old Spinning Wheel” became an instant classic and has remained a favorite among music lovers over the years. But it wasn't just another love song; it had a unique emotional depth that touched listeners' hearts.

Throughout his career, Ray Noble produced several hit records, including “Love Is the Sweetest Thing,” which also reached number one on US pop charts.

Old Spinning Wheel By Ray Noble

Key Takeaways

  • 1934 was a golden era for American music, with several timeless classics that have stood the test of time.
  • Legendary artists such as Bing Crosby, Duke Ellington, and Benny Goodman dominated the year's top hits with their catchy melodies and meaningful lyrics.
  • These songs continue to captivate audiences today, from swing and jazz standards to big band music. Many of them are still covered by various artists, proving their enduring relevance in American musical history.
  • “MoonGlow” by Benny Goodman, “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes” by Paul Whiteman, and “Honeysuckle Rose” by Fats Waller are just some of the unforgettable tracks featured on this list showcasing the sheer genius of songwriting collaboration during that period.

Top Songs From 1934, Final Thoughts

The year 1934 was a golden era for American music, with several timeless classics that have stood the test of time. From swing and jazz standards to big band music, this year marked an important milestone in musical nostalgia.

The top hits of the year were dominated by legendary artists like Bing Crosby, Duke Ellington, and Benny Goodman. These songs continue to captivate audiences today with their catchy melodies and meaningful lyrics.

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