The Swing Shift Shuffle is a radio program of swing, big band, jazz, boogie woogie and other popular music from the 1930's and 40's that airs every Wednesday from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. (US Central Time) on WEVL 89.9 FM in Memphis, Tennessee, with a live webcast at In addition to the radio show, this blog is dedicated to all aspects of the Swing Era, including art, automobiles, cartoons, comics, history, movies, music, news, science, technology, and anything else that happened during that time. It also includes announcements about events in the Memphis/Mid-South area related to the Swing Era, such as classic movies, concerts, dances, lectures, etc. If you see something that fits the description, send it to me at If you would like more information about the radio show, just go to the Radio Show FAQ page.

Monday, January 22, 2018

1940's Porto Baradio

When the ice and snow finally melted away this weekend, I was able to drop by an estate sale or two, and I saw this intriguing item.  Being accompanied by my apprentice (Benjamin, age 5), who required some supervision, I was unable to do any research on it at the sale.  Other than being a bar with a built-in radio, and having a definite 1940's look, I had no information.

Subsequent research revealed it to be a Stewart-Warner "Porto Baradio" from around 1942.  It is what it appears to be:  a portable bar with a built-in radio.  Further research found that this particular piece does not have any of the original glassware, and that the warped speaker grill/radio dial was common for these models.  Listed price at the estate sale was $90, but it was 20% off for the second day of the sale, or $72.  If it lasted to the next day, it may have been half off. 

Sunrise Serenade: Angeline

This morning's Sunrise Serenade was "Angeline" by Cab Calloway and His Orchestra.  Click on the song title to listen courtesy of Jazz On Line.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Unplanned Winter Break

The reasons posts have been a bit scarce recently is because Memphis and the Mid-South experienced some winter weather over the past week.  While we were not reduced to dogsleds and curing caribou meat, the winter wonderland did disrupt school, work and other schedules sufficiently to prevent me from posting anything.  We will be back to more typical winter weather next week, and posts should return to a more regular schedule. 

Sunrise Serenade: Flat Foot Floogee

This morning's Sunrise Serenade was "Flat Foot Floogee" by the Mills Brothers with Louis Armstrong.  Enjoy the video from YouTube

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Depression Era Industrial Film

As Boing Boing noted in this post, before robots did the work, machine parts used to be made by people.  This 1936 film shows workers machining precision components.  If you are a fan of industrial machinery, you should get a kick out of this film.

Sunrise Serenade: Please Don't Talk About Me When I'm Gone

Today's Sunrise Serenade was "Please Don't Talk About Me When I'm Gone" by the Mills Brothers.  Enjoy the video from YouTube.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Playlist For January 10, 2018

The playlist for the January 10, 2018 broadcast of the Swing Shift Shuffle has now been added to the playlist filing cabinet.  

Sunrise Serenade: Barrelhouse Bessie From Basin Street

This morning's Sunrise Serenade was "Barrelhouse Bessie From Basin Street" by the Gene Krupa Orchestra with Anita O'Day.  Click on the song title to listen courtesy of Jazz On Line.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Wartime Monopoly

Boing Boing pointed me to this video about a British Monopoly game made during World War II.  As proof of how supply shortages affected almost every aspect of daily life, this set had no dice, no metal trinkets, low quality cards, and even an apology from the manufacturer for such sacrifices due to the war effort.  The video provides a nice little explanation of why such sacrifices were necessary, and how people adapted, as well as a story about how British intelligence used such games to help POWs escape. 

Sunrise Serenade: Candy

Today's Sunrise Serenade was "Candy" by the Nat King Cole Trio.  Click on the song title to listen courtesy of Jazz On Line