Abe Lyman And His California Orchestra – 1928

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Brunswick 4175 label image


“Won’t You Tell Me Hon (When We’re Gonna Be One)”
Abe Lyman And His California Orchestra;  Paul Neely, vocal
(Brunswick 4175)                                November 26, 1928


“Give Your Little Baby Lots of Lovin'”
Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra;  unknown vocalist
(Brunswick 4175)                               December 22, 1928


Here are two sides from a 1928 Abe Lyman record from the Edward Mitchell collection.

First (though probably not most important!), the discrepancy between the band’s name on one side of the record versus the other rests with someone at Brunswick and not me (I make enough typos to be eager to point out when they are not mine!). I will speculate on why such a discrepancy might have occurred later in the posting.

Abe Lyman led one of the more nationally famous West Coast bands and was among Brunswick’s top-selling artists in the 1920s and early 1930s.  For much of the 1920s, it was the house band at the legendary Cocoanut Grove nightclub at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles.

These and all of Lyman’s 1928 recordings were made in his hometown of Chicago, where the band provided the music for that city’s very successful stage production of Good News, which ran from February through November.  During that period, the band also recorded a few songs from the production, including a 12-inch two-part medley record.  Lyman and the band also appeared in the 1930 film version of Good News.

During the same recording sessions that produced the sides here, the band also recorded an instrumental version of each song for release in the German and possibly other foreign language markets.

Lyman’s band made records from 1923 to 1942. Musical styles evolved at an extremely rapid pace during that period, and bands had to change along with them to remain popular. Thus, Abe Lyman’s records from one period will have a very different sound than those of another. But my experience is that, regardless of the era, most of them are worth looking into.

As for the discrepancy in the band’s name on the opposite sides of this record, at some point around the time these recordings were made, there was a transition of the band’s name (whether the name the band itself went by or merely how it was listed on its Brunswick recordings, I am not sure) from “Abe Lyman and His California Orchestra” to “Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra. ”

Looking at the labels of various issues, recordings from the same November 26, 1928 recording session as “Won’t You Tell Me Hon” were issued under both names.

“Give Your Little Baby Lots of Lovin'” was the only song the band recorded in its December 22, 1928 recording session.

Most recordings from the band’s early 1929 sessions seem to have been issued under “Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra.” However, I found one example still listed as “Abe Lyman And His California Orchestra.”

It occurs to me that it is possible that when later pressings of the band’s previous recordings were made, the name on the label was updated, which would explain why recordings from the same session might appear under both. But seeing such a discrepancy on opposite sides of the same disc is a bit unusual.


If you enjoy these recordings help us spread the word that this wonderful, forgotten music exists by sharing this page with your friends.
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