Tuxedo Junction – Glenn Miller

January 16, 2022

Today’s song of the day is Glenn Miller’s “Tuxedo Junction.” The popular song “Tuxedo Junction” was written by Erskine Hawkins, Bill Johnson, and Julian Dash, with lyrics provided by Buddy Feyne. 

The song was debuted by Erskine Hawkins & His Orchestra, a collegiate dance band originally known as the Bama State Collegian.

Fun Facts:

  • “Tuxedo Junction” was released by Radio Corporation of America (RCA) in 1939 and debuted at #7 on the American pop charts.
  • Glenn Miller & His Orchestra charted at No. 1 with the song in 1940.
  • Hawkins and his Orchestra were one of the house musicians of the Savoy Ballroom in the late 1930s. They alternated with the Chick Webb band and frequently used “Tuxedo Junction” as a sign-off tune prior to the next band taking the stage, ensuring that the dancing continued unbroken.
  • Initially, the song was written as an instrumental.
  • When Lewis Music Publishing received the song, they distributed it to various prospective lyricists to see who could write the greatest lyrics.
  • Buddy Feyne inquired as to why Erskine Hawkins chose the title “Tuxedo Junction.” According to Erskine, the Junction served as a whistle-stop on the “Chitlin’ Circuit.”
  • The actual Tuxedo Junction was a colloquial term for the neighborhood in Birmingham, Alabama’s Ensley suburb. It included a club housed in the Nixon Building and Tuxedo Park. This club was on the Chitlin’ Circuit, which was a cornerstone of segregated Deep South black performers.
  • Once the song was released, it was added to the playlists of European American bands.

Lyrics:

(Musixmatch)

Feelin’ low

Rockin’ slow

I want to go

Right back where I belong

Feelin’ low

Rockin’ slow

I want to go

Right back where I belong

Way down south in Birmingham

I mean south in Alabam’

There’s an old place where people go

To dance the night away

They all drive or walk for miles

To get jive that southern style

It’s an old jive that makes you want

To dance till break of day

It’s a junction where the town folks meet

At each function in a tux they greet you

Come on down, forget your care

Come on down, you’ll find me there

So long town, I’m heading for

Tuxedo Junction now

Feelin’ low

Rockin’ slow

I want to go

Right back where I belong

Way down south in Birmingham

I mean south in Alabam’

There’s an old place where people go

To dance the night away

They all drive or walk for miles

To get jive that southern style

It’s an old jive that makes you want

To dance till break of day

It’s a junction where the town folks meet

At each function in a tux they greet you

Come on down, forget your care

Come on down, you’ll find me there

So long town, I’m heading for

Tuxedo Junction now

Tuxedo Junction now

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