Tag Archive: 1920s

THE  » ROARING TWENTIES« / THE JAZZ AGE : watch the slide show to know why  this painting by Thomas Hart Benton is emblematic of the era:

  •  the « flapper »  
  • the Jazz age
  • the Cotton Club
  • Speakeasies 

Actress Louise Brooks was a star at the time of silent movies in the twenties, she also had the typical « Flapper »style :



Black artists like tap dancer Mr Bo Jangles performed for the fashionable white audience that went to the famous Cotton Club in New York City, during Prohibition.  Here is a beautiful tribute to him from Nina Simone, the High Priestress of Soul, an icon of the Civil Rights Movement era :

 here are the lyrics : 

Bob Dylan – Mr. Bojangles

I knew a man Bojangles and he’d dance for you in worn out shoes

Silver hair and ragged shirt and baggy pants, the old soft shoe

He’d jump so high, he’d jump so high, then he’d lightly touched down

I met him in a cell in New Orleans I was down and out

He looked to me to be the eye of age as he spoke right out

He talked of life, he talked of life, laughed, clicked his heels and said

He said his name Bojangles and he danced a lick across the cell

He grabbed his pants for a better stance, oh he jumped so high and he

clicked up his heels

He let go laugh, he let go laugh, shook back his clothes all around

Mr. Bojangles, Mr. Bojangles, dance. 

He danced for those at minstrel shows and county fairs throughtout the South

He spoke with tears of 15 years of how his dog and him travelled about

The dog up and died, he up and died.

After 20 years he still grieves

He said « I dance now at every chance at honky-tonks for drinks and tips

But most the time I spends behind these county bars, ’cause your see, I drinks a bit »

He shook his head and as he shook his head, I heard someone ask him, « Please » — « Please » …

Mr. Bojangles, Mr. Bojangles — « Dance »

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