International Sweethearts of Rhythm, first of all, is a great name for an all-female band that can really swing, as well as throw down the boogie, as on this tune, “Jump Children”:
Given the group’s top-notch talent and global aspirations, there is shockingly little of The International Sweethearts of Rhythm on wax, I am sorry to report.
According to Sherrie Tucker, in her excellent history of women in jazz – Swing Shift: “All-Girl” Bands of the 1940s – The International Sweethearts of Rhythm made three 10-minute shorts for Associated Artists Productions. “All three films were produced by William Alexander, an African-American entrepreneur and founder of Associated Producers of Negro Motion Pictures. Each short included three musical performances by the band. Soundies Corporation of America acquired the first of the three shorts and released the musical numbers as three Soundies: ‘Jump Children’ (Aug. 26, 1946), ‘That Man of Mine’ (Sep. 23, 1946), and ‘She’s Crazy with the Heat’ (Nov. 3, 1946). The song, ‘Jump Children,’ is a modified version of an earlier song, ‘Do You Want to Jump Children?’ by Al Donohue, Jimmy Van Heusen, Willie Bryant and Victor Selsman.”
The International Sweethearts of Rhythm was the first racially-integrated ladies-only swing band – their spirit could be found later in such groups as Isis: