Lucky Millinder: When the Lights Go On Again (All Over the World)

Track

When the Lights Go On Again (All Over the World)

Group

Lucky Millinder & His Orchestra

CD

Lucky Millinder: Jukebox Hits 1942-1951 (Acrobat Music)

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Musicians:

Dizzy Gillespie (trumpet), Tab Smith (alto sax), Panama Francis (drums), Bill Doggett (piano),

William ‘Chieftie’ Scott (trumpet), Nelson Bryant (trumpet), George Stevenson (trombone), Joe Britton (trombone), Billy Bowen (alto sax), Stafford ‘Pazzuza’ Simon (tenor sax), Ernest Puce (tenor sax), Trevor Bacon (guitar, vocal), Nick Fenton (bass)

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Directed by Lucky Millinder. Composed by Eddie Seller, Sol Marcus, and Bennie Benjamin

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Recorded: New York, July 29, 1942

Albumcoverluckymillinderjukeboxhits

Rating: 86/100 (learn more)

Harlem bandleader Lucky Millinder had a big hit with this World War II ballad, which reached #1 on the R&B charts and #14 on the pop charts in 1942. This was a love song with a patriotic twist: the lights mentioned in the title would "go on again (all over the world)" when the war-imposed blackouts of potential bombing targets were no longer necessary. Millinder was a "crossover" act before the term even existed, mixing rhythm-and-blues and other commercial elements into his music. Yet his band, which had residencies at the Savoy and later the Apollo, was a breeding ground for modern jazz talent, and featured at various times Dizzy Gillespie (who appears on this track), Thelonious Monk, Sir Charles Thompson and Eddie 'Lockjaw' Davis. Millinder, for his part, could neither read music nor play an instrument. This performance goes easy on the jazz, but provides insights into other currents active in 1940s Harlem musical life.

Reviewer: Ted Gioia

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