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Broadway to Main StreetHow Show Tunes Enchanted America$
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Laurence Maslon

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780199832538

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199832538.001.0001

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Was There Too Much of a Crowd, All Too Lush and Loud?

Was There Too Much of a Crowd, All Too Lush and Loud?

Pop Singles and the Adult Contemporaneity of Broadway

(p.153) Chapter 11 Was There Too Much of a Crowd, All Too Lush and Loud?
Broadway to Main Street

Laurence Maslon

Oxford University Press

The decade of the 1960s provided the last fertile commercial field for pop singers interpreting Broadway material. Songs from incipient Broadway scores were introduced to America far ahead of their debuts on the New York stage; likewise, there was an important cadre of pop singers who were associated with Broadway material: Tony Bennett, Bobby Darin, Louis Armstrong, to name a few. Even more compellingly, there were pop singers who also performed to acclaim on Broadway: Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gormé, Robert Goulet, Sammy Davis, Jr., and Barbra Streisand. The symbiotic relationship between their stage and pop material would invigorate the musical scene. At the same time, rock and roll ascended the cultural ladder and elbowed show music out of the express lane of popular music. Throughout the 1960s, the two genres coexisted in a tenuous détente, but by the end of the decade, Broadway music had to face the specter of cultural irrelevance.

Keywords:   Hello, Dolly, Angela Lansbury, Barbra Streisand, Rock and roll, Tony Bennett, Sammy Davis, Jr., Adult contemporary charts, John Kander, Cabaret, Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gormé

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