Rhythm Clubs, record series, and the everyday connoisseurship of ‘hot rhythm’ records in interwar Britain


  • Lawrence Davies Newcastle University




Rhythm Clubs, connoisseurship, record collecting, listening, leisure


The Rhythm Club movement was a crucial development in British jazz history: it galvanizedan emerging audience of primarily lower-middle-class young men, who dramaticallyreshaped how jazz was understood and consumed. Using contemporary pressclippings, as well as archive material relating to the earliest Rhythm Club meetings, Iexamine how participants developed a unique form of 'everyday connoisseurship' thatmerged ideals of autonomous 'art' culture with a critical vocabulary that was informedby more quotidian elements of musical consumption and leisure activity. My account ofhot rhythm appreciation seeks to nuance existing popular narratives of early jazz recordconsumption that overemphasize enthusiasts' isolation from a putatively authentic jazzperformance culture.

Author Biography

Lawrence Davies, Newcastle University

Lawrence Davies is a Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow at the InternationalCentre for Music Studies, Newcastle University.


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How to Cite

Davies, L. (2020). Rhythm Clubs, record series, and the everyday connoisseurship of ‘hot rhythm’ records in interwar Britain. Jazz Research Journal, 13(1-2), 110–129. https://doi.org/10.1558/jazz.37806