Swing music

Spotify: playlist of Swing classics

Youtube playlist


How to find more music

If you are learning to dance Lindy Hop or planning to start it, probably you would like to listen to more swing music. That’s an excellent idea! You might be wondering where you can find swing tunes. Below, we provide you with some pointers and links for that.

Sites to find music:

Artists to look for:

  • Early Jazz
    • Fats Waller was a showman and master stride pianist. He’s a precursor to Cab Calloway. If you’re looking for something light and fun, he is your man.
    • Louis Armstrong was an institution. He played music for 40 years, and most of it isn’t what you’ll hear at a swing dance. He was a brilliant musician and an inspiration to everyone who followed.
    • Duke Ellington did everything. He composed a broad range of music. Most of his early work is not swing music, but his contribution to the big band era is hard to match.
  • Swing Era
    • Count Basie was the main man in the Kansas City music scene, and his band has a sound that is distinct from the New York bands of the era. His music typically plays on the edges of tempo: Fast and slow.
    • Benny Goodman played an important role in the history of swing music: He introduced it to the world. If you find a good song he recorded, you can usually — but not always — find a version that’s better for dancing by someone else.
    • Ella Fitzgerald recorded music for 59 years and probably sang every song worth singing. What else is there to say?
    • Cab Calloway is the model for the over-the-top big band leader. He is wacky and all about dancing and having fun.
  • Other artists worth checking out
    • Jimmie Lunceford
    • Billie Holiday
    • Artie Shaw
    • Fletcher Henderson
    • Louis Jordan
    • Louis Prima
    • Big Crosby