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British Dance bands evolved a unique style of popular jazz and dance music during the 1920s and 1930s that evolved in British dance halls and hotel ballrooms thousands of miles away from the true origins of jazz. The result was a melodic good time music that certainly had jazz influences but also maintained a peculiarly British sense of rhythm and style which came from the Music Hall tradition. Often comedians of the day or Music Hall personalities would sing novelty recordings backed by well known British Dance Band leaders. Famous British Dance band performers and band leaders include: Bert Ambrose, Bertini, Billy Cotton, Roy Fox, Geraldo, Carroll Gibbons, Henry Hall, Jack Harris, Jack Jackson, Joe Loss, Charlie Kunz, Victor Silvester, Jack Hylton, Ray Noble, and Debroy Somers. Some of these went on to fame in the USA in the Swing era.

The Squadronaires, a Royal Air Force band which became the best known of the English military dance bands of the time, is an example of such a band. The Squadronaires had hits like "There's Something in the Air" and "South Rampart Street Parade." They played at dances and concerts for service personnel and also broadcast on the BBC and recorded on the Decca label. Many of the members formerly played as side men in Bert Ambrose’s band, and they continued to be popular after the war under the leadership of Ronnie Aldrich.


British dance bands developed a unique style of popular jazz and dance music during the 1920s and 1930s that developed in British dance halls and hotel ballrooms thousands of miles away from the true origins of jazz. The result was a melodic, good time music that certainly had jazz influences but also maintained a peculiarly British sense of rhythm and style which came from the music hall tradition. Often comedians of the day or music hall personalities would sing novelty recordings backed by well known British dance band leaders. Famous British dance band performers and band leaders include: Bert Ambrose, Bertini, Billy Cotton, Roy Fox, Geraldo, Carroll Gibbons, Henry Hall, Jack Harris, Jack Jackson, Joe Loss, Charlie Kunz, Victor Silvester, Jack Hylton, Ray Noble and Debroy Somers. Some of these went on to fame in the USA in the swing era.

The Squadronaires, a Royal Air Force band which became the best known of the English military dance bands of the time, is an example of such a band. The Squadronaires had hits like "There's Something in the Air" and "South Rampart Street Parade." They played at dances and concerts for service personnel and also broadcast on the BBC and recorded on the Decca label. Many of the members formerly played as side men in Bert Ambrose’s band, and they continued to be popular after the war under the leadership of Ronnie Aldrich.

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