Songs of 1921

Audio Recording

Programming note: If you missed Taking the Chief, Mark's archive documentary from 1988 on Serenade Radio, it re-airs at midnight GMT, which is 7pm North American Eastern/4pm Pacific. You can listen from anywhere on the planet right here.

~If you've listened to our Hundred Years Ago Show, you'll know we accompany the headlines of 1921 with the hit songs of that year, in the versions that first made them famous - ie, on scratchy 78s with lots of hisses and crackles. Well, Jason Cawley, an Arizona member of The Mark Steyn Club, has had it with that. He responded to last week's Hundred Years Ago Show as follows:

Mark - I have enjoyed this series, but the portion of the time that is now ancient musical renditions is becoming distinctly oppressive.

Well, this New Year special is just for you, Jason: the songs of a century ago but in less ancient renditions without all those hisses and crackles. Instead, we'll hear the music and lyrics of 1921 as rendered decades later by the Beatles, Shirley Bassey, Mark Knopfler, Chet Atkins, Allan Sherman and more.

Simply click above to listen.

This is the second of our New Year On The Town music specials. The first - a century of non-stop New Year Number Ones - can be heard here. The third of this special weekend trio airs tomorrow.

~On the Town and The Hundred Years Ago Show are special productions of The Mark Steyn Club. For more on the Steyn Club, see here.

There's a whole cavalcade of musical delights over on our Netflix-style music home page, where you'll find easy-to-access live performances by everyone from Herman's Hermits to Liza Minnelli; Mark's interviews with Chuck Berry, Leonard Bernstein and Bananarama (just to riffle through the Bs); and audio documentaries on P G Wodehouse's songs, Simon after Garfunkel, and much more. We'll be adding to the archive in the months ahead, but, even as it is, we hope you'll find the new SteynOnline music home page a welcome respite from the woes of the world.