Top 100 Instrumentals 1930-1939

 
Wayne King Orchestra Good Night, Sweetheart

Wayne King Orchestra Good Night, Sweetheart 1931


The Top 100 Instrumentals 1930-1939 is the era of the big bands and the introduction into the “swing era” of music. Big bands by Glenn Miller, Wayne King (Pictured – All-Time #1 Song of the decade), Benny Goodman, Arti Shaw, Harry James, The Dorsey Brothers and Duke Ellington were among the very best of this era.

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The country was going through the “Great Depression” and just prior to World War II and the “dust storms” had a lot of people in the unemployment lines. However, this era saw some of the greatest instrumentals to debut on the scene and make music history.

Historical Headlines of the Decade

In 1930, Nazis gain in German elections. Unemployment soars. Crossley Inc. tabulates the first formal radio ratings system. Astronomers discover the ninth planet Pluto. The U.S. unemployment rate is 8.9%.

  • In 1931, Spain becomes a republic. Gangster Al Capone sentenced to 11 years in prison for tax evasion. The “Star Spangled Banner” becomes the national anthem. The Empire State Building is completed. General Motor’s Frigidaire makes refrigerators safe for household use.  Double features emerge. The unemployment rate is 16.3%.
  • In 1932, Famine is widespread in the U.S.S.R. Nazis lead in German elections with 230 seats. Lindbergh’s baby is kidnapped, killed. Amelia Earhart first woman to fly Atlantic solo. Radio City Music Hall opens. James Chadwick discovers the sub-atomic neutron. FDR elected president. The unemployment rate is 24.1%.
  • In 1933, Hitler becomes chancellor in Germany. FDR launches the New Deal. Esquire magazine debuts. Prohibition is repealed. Laurens Hammond introduces his Hammond organ. The unemployment rate is 25.2%.
  • In 1934, Hitler becomes Fuhrer. U.S.S.R. admitted to League of Nations. The Securities Exchange Act is passed. Federal Communications Commission is established. Bonnie & Clyde killed in Louisiana. Dillinger shot outside Chicago movie theater “The Biograph“. Henrik Dam discovers vitamin k. The unemployment rate is 22%.
  • In 1935, Persia becomes known as Iran. Nazis enact Nuremberg Laws against Jews. Mussolini invades Ethiopia. Huey Long assassinated. George H. Gallop begins the “Gallop Poll”. Du Pont chemist creates nylon. Radar is pioneered by Robert Watson-Watt in England. The unemployment rate is 20.1%.
  • In 1936, King George V dies, Edward VIII succeeds him. War between China and Japan begins. FDR is reelected in a landslide. Dust Bowl problems continue. The Boulder Dam (Hoover Dam) is completed. The first successful helicopter flight is made. The unemployment rate is 16.9%.
  • In 1937, Italy withdraws from the League of Nations. Japan invades China. The “Hindenburg explodes at Lakehurst, N.J. killing 36. Amelia Earhart vanishes over the Pacific. Glenn Miller Band debuts in New York.  The Golden Gate Bridge is completed. The unemployment rate is 14.3%.
  • In 1938, Hitler marches into Austria. Nazis destroy Jewish shops and homes. Orson Wells broadcasts his famous “War of the Worlds“. A minimum wage is established. “Information Please” a quiz show debuts on the radio. Teflon is developed at DuPont. The unemployment rate is 19.0%.
  • In 1939, World War II begins. New York’s World Fair opens. First food stamp program begins in Rochester, New York. Gone With The Wind premieres. Paul Muller develops DDT. The unemployment rate is 17.2%.

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Benny Goodman #1 Artist of the Decade 1930-1939

Benny Goodman #1 Artist of the Decade 1930-1939

Musical Chart Facts

Here is some very interesting chart facts for this decade.

  • For a song to make the Top 100 chart, it had to peak at position #10 or higher.
  • For a song to make the Top 10, it had to peak at the #1 position.
  • For a song to make the Top 40, it had to peak at #5 position or higher.
  • There were a total of 278 instrumentals that charted in this era.
  • There are a total of 12 instrumentals that peaked at the #1 position.
  • The year of 1937 had the most songs on the chart with 17.
  • The year of 1932 had the least number of songs on the chart with 2.
  • There are a total of 40 different artists that charted a song in the Top 100.
  • The artist with the most songs on the chart is Benny Goodman with 21.
  • The records of longevity are “Sugar Blues” #20, by Clyde McCoy, and “Star Dust” #11, by Isham Jones, each with 20 weeks.

Note: The song In The Mood by Glenn Miller, chart debut was on October 7, 1939 and could have been included in this top 100 chart. If it was, it would be the decades #1 instrumental song. However, the song did not peak at the #1 position until February, 1940, and it stayed in the top position for 12 consecutive weeks. It is fair to list songs in the year when they peak at their position and not when it’s released.  You will find “In The Mood” on the 1940-1949 top 100 chart.

Artie Shaw Begin The Beguine #2 Instrumental of the Thirties

Artie Shaw Begin The Beguine #2 Instrumental of the Thirties

Top 100 Instrumentals 1930-1939

The list of the top 100 instrumentals will include the Rank, Title, Artist, Peak Position, Peak Weeks, Year of Peak Position.

Rank  Title/Artist / Peak # / Peak Weeks () / Peak Year

  1. Good Night, Sweetheart / Wayne King #1 (7) 1931
  2. Begin The Beguine / Artie Shaw #1 (6) 1938
  3. Cocktails For Two / Duke Ellington #1 (5) 1934
  4. Don’t Be That Way / Benny Goodman #1 (5) 1938
  5. I Let A Song Get Out Of My Heart / Duke Ellington #1 (3) 1938
  6. Satan Takes A Holiday / Tommy Dorsey #1 (3) 1937
  7. Sunrise Serenade / Glen Gray #1 (2) 1939
  8. The Carioca / Enric Madriguera #1 (2) 1934
  9. The Continental / Leo Reisman #1 (2) 1934
  10. You Can’t Stop Me From Dreaming / Teddy Wilson #1 (2) 1937
  11. Star Dust / Isham Jones #1 (1) 1930
  12. Moon Glow / Benny Goodman #1 (1) 1933
  13. Carioca / Harry Sosnik #2 (3) 1934
  14. Organ Grinder’s Swing / Jimmie Lunceford #2 (3) 1936
  15. Night And Day / Eddy Duchin #2 (3) 1933
  16. Star Dust / Benny Goodman #2 (2) 1936
  17. Nobody’s Sweetheart / Paul Whiteman #2 (2) 1930
  18. Moon Glow / Duke Ellington #2 (2) 1934
  19. The Dipsy Doodle / Russ Morgan #2 (2) 1937
  20. Sugar Blues / Clyde McCoy #2 (1) 1931
  21. Christopher Columbus / Andy Kirk & His 12 Clouds of Joy #2 (1) 1936
  22. Farewell Blues / Ted Lewis & His Band #2 (1) 1930
  23. Red Sails In The Sunset / Mantovani #2 (1) 1935
  24. Swingtime In The Rockies / Benny Goodman #2 (1) 1936
  25. Moonlight Serenade / Glenn Miller #3 (1) 1939
  26. Sophisticated Lady / Duke Ellington #3 (1) 1933
  27. Hot Lips / Henry Busse #3 (1) 1934
  28. Mood Indigo / Duke Ellington #3 (1) 1931
  29. Josephine / Wayne King #1 (1) 1937
  30. Boogie Woogie / Tommy Dorsey #3 (1) 1938
  31. Caravan / Duke Ellington #4 (1) 1937
  32. Stormy Weather / Duke Ellington #4 (1) 1933
  33. The Waltz You Saved For Me / Wayne King #4 (1) 1930
  34. Nola / Tommy Dorsey #4 (1) 1937
  35. Sophisticated Lady / Glen Gray #4 (1) 1933
  36. Love Me Or Leave Me / Benny Goodman #4 (1) 1936
  37. Yellow Dog Blues / Ted Lewis & His Band #4 (1) 1930
  38. Stompin’ At The Savoy / Benny Goodman #4 (1) 1937
  39. Honeysuckle Rose / Bunny Berigan #4 (1) 1937
  40. Trust In Me / Wayne King #5 (1) 1937
  41. Body And Soul / Benny Goodman #5 (1) 1935
  42. Take My World / Benny Goodman #5 (1) 1934
  43. Here’s To Romance / Enric Madriguera #5 (1) 1935
  44. Song Of India / Tommy Dorsey #5 (1) 1937
  45. Bugle Call Rag / Benny Goodman #5 (1) 1934
  46. The Goona Goo / Clyde McCoy #5 (1) 1937
  47. The Tinkle Song / Kay Kyser #5 (1) 1939
  48. Sugar Blues / Clyde McCoy #6 (1) 1935
  49. Hors D’oeurves / Ambrose & His Orchestra #6 (1) 1935
  50. Accent On Youth / Duke Ellington #6 (1) 1935
  51. Merry-Go Round / Duke Ellington #6 (1) 1935
  52. Wild Goose Chase / Glen Gray #6 (1) 1933
  53. Alexander’s Rag Time Band / Ray Noble #6 (1) 1938
  54. Ain’t Misbehavin’ / Teddy Wilson #6 (1) 1937
  55. Tuxedo Junction / Erskine Hawkins #7 (1) 1939
  56. Sunrise Serenade / Glenn Miller #7 (1) 1939
  57. Get Out Of Town / Eddy Duchin #7 (1) 1938
  58. Nightmare / Artie Shaw #7 (1) 1938
  59. Lambeth Walk / Duke Ellington #7 (1) 1938
  60. One O’ Clock Jump / Harry James #7 (1) 1938
  61. Serenade In The Night / Mantovani #7 (1) 1936
  62. Sing, Sing, Sing (With A Swing) / Benny Goodman #7 (1) 1938
  63. Solo Hop / Glenn Miller #7 (1) 1935
  64. Jalousie / Leo Reisman #7 (1) 1932
  65. Moon Glow / Cab Calloway #7 (1) 1934
  66. Black Raspberry Jam / Fats Waller #7 (1) 1936
  67. For Dancers Only / Jimmie Lunceford #7 (1) 1937
  68. The Big Dipper / Larry Clinton #7 (1) 1937
  69. The Big Apple / Clyde Lucas & His California Dons #8 (1) 1937
  70. Smoke Rings / Clyde McCoy #8 (1) 1933
  71. Back Bay Shuffle / Artie Shaw #8 (1) 1938
  72. Pink Elephants / George Olsen #8 (1) 1932
  73. One O’ Clock Jump / Benny Goodman #8 (1) 1938
  74. I’m Getting Sentimental Over You / Tommy Dorsey #8 (1) 1936
  75. From Now On / Eddy Duchin #8 (1) 1938
  76. Moon Glow / Benny Goodman #8 (1) 1936
  77. Peckin’ / Benny Goodman #8 (1) 1937
  78. Music Hall Rag / Benny Goodman #9 (1) 1935
  79. Here’s Love In Your Eyes / Benny Goodman #9 (1) 1936
  80. Traffic Jam / Artie Shaw #9 (1) 1939
  81. At The Woodchopper’s Ball / Woody Herman #9 (1) 1939
  82. Organ Grinder’s Swing / Benny Goodman #9 (1) 1936
  83. Honeysuckle Rose / Red Norvo #9 (1) 1935
  84. Christopher Columbus / Benny Goodman #9 (1) 1936
  85. Organ Grinder’s Swing / Hudson Delange Orchestra #9 (1) 1936
  86. Scattin’ At The Kit Kat / Duke Ellington #9 (1) 1937
  87. My Man / Wayne King / #9 (1) 1939
  88. Ballad In Blue / Benny Goodman #9 (1) 1935
  89. I Let A Song Get Out Of My Heart / Hot Lips Page & His Band #9 (1) 1938
  90. Night Must Fall / Xavier Cugat #9 (1) 1939
  91. Saddest Tale / Duke Ellington #9 (1) 1934
  92. China Boy / Benny Goodman #9 (1) 1936
  93. Stompin’ At The Savoy / Chick Webb #10 (1) 1934
  94. Little Brown Jug / Glenn Miller #10 (1) 1939
  95. King Kamahamena / Ted Fio Rito #10 (1) 1934
  96. Bumble Bee Stomp / Benny Goodman #10 (1) 1938
  97. Wizzin’ The Wiz / Lionel Hampton #10 (1) 1939
  98. The New Tiger Rag / Paul Whiteman #10 (1) 1930
  99. King Porter / Benny Goodman #10 (1) 1935
  100. Christopher Columbus / Fletcher Henderson #10 (1) 1936

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 Posted by at 10:28 pm