St. James Infirmary Blues – 1933

Cab Calloway


The Calloway record forms the soundtrack for Betty Boop

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Betty Boop’s cartoons of the early 1930s featured the inspired and inventive animation of Max Fleischer; occasionally the soundtrack was made by a jazz group.

This clip, which is taken from the 1933 Betty Boop cartoon Snow White, utilizes Cab Calloway’s recording of “St. James Infirmary” with Cab’s vocal being “sung” by Koko the Clown.

The original cartoon did use Calloway’s vocal along with having his band romp through “Tiger Rag” but this version with the original recording sticks to “St. James Infirmary” and it all fits, along with the humorous animation.

-Scott Yanow


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