So, I’m listening to some big band ( via the 900 music options on cable tv) and a question and a comment/observation have cropped up: Beat me daddy eight to the bar. was a popular song back in the day, but what does this line mean? All that meat and no potatoes is an album by Will Bradley (best of) and it is an hysterical title.
Google-fu tells me that **All that Meat and No Potatoes ** is urban slang for a really fat guy. It also tells me it was a song *I * think it is more of a sexual slam for " Big Dick with no balls."
Also, why does Big Band music go better on a cold rainy day?
Because it only sounds good when your world is icky, depressing and awful. Thus its popularity among the elderly, extreme social conservatives, and the kind of people who still live in their mothers’ basements.
The best colleges that teach big band music are in places like Paterson, NJ; Youngstown, Ohio; and Denton, Texas. That ought to tell you something right there.
No authorative cite for this, but I’d always interpreted that line to be a reference to how many drum beats there were in a standard measure in swing music. Especially in contrast to other music of the same time, where the beat wasn’t as fast, and sometimes not even noticeable to barely educated music ears.
As for why swing goes so well on a rainy day?
[tongue in cheek]
Most modern Americans associate swing music with WWII era. And most of us older folk, at least, got our exposure to the life and times of that era through black and white movies.
Now, on a true cloudy, rainy day, all the colors outside get washed out, and faded - often reminiscent of b&w films. So, they just go together. It’s comfort music for the visual cue.
[/tongue in cheek]
ETA: pinkfreud beat me. (But only once, not eight times!)
All That Meat And No Potatoes is from the Fats Waller songbook. I have a recording of Louis Armstrong singing it. There could be a sexual angle to anything, I guess, but the lyric is really about food.
I got into big band music when I was a kid, and Time Life Records send us one of those demo records (the original floppy disks!) with selections from their album series The Swing Era, with new stereo recordings of all the classic big band numbers. Darned if I didn’t borrow and enjoy each of those well-annotated albums from the library.
I heard on a jazz show that “beat me, daddy, eight to the bar” is a phrase that also describes the rhythm–in other words, it doesn’t just say “eight to the bar” but demonstrates that you play them syncopated, as if you were saying the words in a natural way. (Da-daa, da-daa, da-da-da-da.)