MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 3,248 this week

Birth of the Blues (1941)

 -  Music  -  7 November 1941 (USA)
6.4
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.4/10 from 219 users  
Reviews: 9 user | 2 critic

Jeff grows up near Basin Street in New Orleans, playing his clarinet with the dock workers. He puts together a band, the Basin Street Hot-Shots, which includes a cornet player, Memphis. ... See full summary »

Writers:

(story), , 3 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb Exclusive Trailer

View the Foxcatcher Exclusive trailer with Steve Carell and Channing Tatum


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 24 titles
created 06 Oct 2012
 
a list of 1050 titles
created 07 Apr 2013
 
a list of 6727 titles
created 8 months ago
 
a list of 35 titles
created 5 months ago
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Birth of the Blues (1941)

Birth of the Blues (1941) on IMDb 6.4/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Birth of the Blues.
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Crusty Dr. McRory of Fallbridge, Maine hires a replacement for his vacation sight unseen. Alas, he and young singing doctor Jim Pearson don't hit it off; but Pearson is delighted to stay, ... See full summary »

Director: Elliott Nugent
Stars: Bing Crosby, Barry Fitzgerald, Joan Caulfield
Going My Way (1944)
Comedy | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Youthful Father Chuck O'Malley led a colorful life of sports, song, and romance before joining the Roman Catholic clergy, but his level gaze and twinkling eyes make it clear that he knows ... See full summary »

Director: Leo McCarey
Stars: Bing Crosby, Barry Fitzgerald, Frank McHugh
Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Pop, a security guard at Paramount has told his son that he's the head of the studio. When his son arrives in Hollywood on shore leave with his buddies, Pop enlists the aid of the studio's ... See full summary »

Directors: George Marshall, A. Edward Sutherland
Stars: Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Fred MacMurray
Anything Goes (1956)
Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Bill Benson and Ted Adams are to appear in a Broadway show together and, while in Paris, each 'discovers' the perfect leading lady for the plum female role. Each promises the prize role to ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Lewis
Stars: Bing Crosby, Donald O'Connor, Zizi Jeanmaire
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Show business twin sisters Rosemary and Susie, one serious and the other a scatterbrain, join the WAVES and both fall in love with crooner Johnny Cabot.

Director: Mark Sandrich
Stars: Bing Crosby, Betty Hutton, Sonny Tufts
A Free Soul (1931)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

An alcoholic lawyer who successfully defended a notorious gambler on a murder charge objects when his free-spirited daughter becomes romantically involved with him.

Director: Clarence Brown
Stars: Norma Shearer, Leslie Howard, Lionel Barrymore
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Bing Crosby and Bob Hope star in the first of the 'Road to' movies as two playboys trying to forget previous romances in Singapore - until they meet Dorothy Lamour.

Director: Victor Schertzinger
Stars: Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Dorothy Lamour
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Stopped in Mexico by U.S. Immigration, Georges Iscovescu hopes to get into the country by marrying a citizen.

Director: Mitchell Leisen
Stars: Charles Boyer, Olivia de Havilland, Paulette Goddard
High Time (1960)
Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Widower and hamburger restaurateur Harvey Howard decides to go to college at 51 years of age. Resisting the easy path, he insists on not receiving preferential treatment, and lives in a ... See full summary »

Director: Blake Edwards
Stars: Bing Crosby, Fabian, Tuesday Weld
Our Town (1940)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Change comes slowly to a small New Hampshire town in the early 20th century. People grow up, get married, live, and die. Milk and the newspaper get delivered every morning, and nobody locks... See full summary »

Director: Sam Wood
Stars: William Holden, Martha Scott, Fay Bainter
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A successful song-and-dance team become romantically involved with a sister act and team up to save the failing Vermont inn of their former commanding general.

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney
Biography | Music | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Director: Andrew L. Stone
Stars: Allan Jones, Mary Martin, Walter Connolly
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Jeff Lambert
...
Betty Lou Cobb
...
Memphis
Carolyn Lee ...
Aunt Phoebe Cobb
...
Louey (as Rochester)
J. Carrol Naish ...
Blackie
Warren Hymer ...
Limpy
Horace McMahon ...
Wolf (as Horace MacMahon)
Ruby Elzy ...
Ruby
Jack Teagarden ...
Pepper
Danny Beck ...
Deek
Harry Barris ...
Suds
Perry Botkin Sr. ...
Leo (as Perry Botkin)
Minor Watson ...
Henri Lambert
Harry Rosenthal ...
Piano Player
Edit

Storyline

Jeff grows up near Basin Street in New Orleans, playing his clarinet with the dock workers. He puts together a band, the Basin Street Hot-Shots, which includes a cornet player, Memphis. They struggle to get their jazz music accepted by the cafe society of the city. Betty Lou joins their band as a singer and gets Louie to show her how to do scat singing. Memphis and Jeff both fall in love with Betty Lou. Written by Lisa Grable <grable@unity.ncsu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Strike Up The Band ! * Here comes happiness . . . in a merry medley of romance . . . and rhythm !

Genres:

Music

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 November 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sinfonia B├írbara  »

Box Office

Budget:

$857,283 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

"The Screen Guild Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on January 18, 1951 with Bing Crosby again reprising his film role. See more »

Connections

Features The Golden Princess (1925) See more »

Soundtracks

Shine
(uncredited)
Music by Ford Dabney
Lyrics by Cecil Mack
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Not What I Had Expected
5 February 2005 | by (Dallas, Texas) – See all my reviews

In this musical comedy set in New Orleans in the 1890's, a clarinet player with a passion for jazz, played by Bing Crosby, organizes a band of white musicians in an effort to bring this "blue music" to the white café society of New Orleans, during an era when whites looked down on jazz as a product of Black people.

The film's screenplay is not very good. Characters are poorly defined. They exist only to further the contrived plot. For a musical, there's too much dialogue, composed largely of supposedly humorous one liners. That may have worked in 1941. But times change. Sixty years after the film, the script now seems dismissive of serious social concerns, and is therefore not funny.

Meanwhile, the shallow plot dilutes the impact of the film's music. Blues numbers include "Melancholy Baby", "Memphis Blues", and several others. But they are uninspired, and seem tangential to the talky script. The only musical number I found even faintly memorable was "St. Louis Blues", performed with passion by diva Ruby Elzy.

One thing I did find interesting was the inclusion of a couple of bit part actors who would later become well known. Mantan Moreland (from the Charlie Chan series) shows up toward the beginning as a trumpet player. And Barbara Pepper (as Doris Ziffel from "Green Acres") shows up off and on in the film as a nightclub hussy.

Given the title, I was expecting a blues extravaganza, not a talk fest. Even so, "Birth Of The Blues" might have some value given its historical subject matter. And it probably would be a good film for fans of Bing Crosby, for whom the film functions as a cinematic vehicle.


8 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Info On Perry Botkin Sr,incorrectly credited as Perry Botkin Jr in film noel-joyce
Colour cameo in a Black-and-white movie SteveSwayne
It's a small world Maddy-17
Discuss Birth of the Blues (1941) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?