Fred Astaire As “Bojangles Of Harlem,” 1936, (video)

Fred Astaire as boljanglesHere’s a vintage 1936 original photograph capturing Fred Astaire wearing blackface attired to evoke the dancer and Harlem man Bill Robinson, in the “Bojangles of Harlem” solo sequence of “Swing Time”. Continue Reading →

Irving Berlin’s Harlem ‘Ritz’ Write-out

puttin on the ritz still 1930Puttin’ on the Ritz is a popular song written and published in 1929 by Irving Berlin and introduced by Harry Richman in the musical film Puttin’ on the Ritz (1930). The title derives from the slang expression “putting on the Ritz”, meaning to dress very fashionably. Continue Reading →