The Number One Hits of 1921

Dec 11, 1920 – Jan 28, 1921
Paul Whiteman
The Japanese Sandman
Paul Whiteman was an American bandleader and composer known as the “King of Jazz”. The Japanese Sandman is an early jazz standard composed by Richard A. Whiting and Raymond B. Egan, which became popular with Whiteman’s arrangement.
Jan 29, 1921 – Mar 11, 1921
Paul Whiteman
Wang Wang Blues
Wang Wang Blues is another jazz standard composed by Gus Mueller, Buster Johnson, and Henry Busse. The song showcases Whiteman’s band’s ability to adapt to different jazz styles and rhythms.
Mar 12, 1921 – Apr 15, 1921
Eddie Cantor
Eddie Cantor was an American comedian, singer, and actor, known for his energetic stage presence and engaging personality. Margie is a popular song composed by Con Conrad and J. Russel Robinson, which became one of Cantor’s early hits.
Apr 16, 1921 – May 13, 1921
Al Jolson
O-H-I-O (O-My! O!)
Al Jolson was a prominent American singer, comedian, and actor, known as “The World’s Greatest Entertainer”. O-H-I-O (O-My! O!) is a lively song composed by Abe Olman, with lyrics by Jack Yellen, showcasing Jolson’s distinct vocal style.
May 14, 1921 – Jun 3, 1921
Marion Harris
Look For The Silver Lining
Marion Harris was an American singer and actress known for performing popular jazz and blues songs. Look For The Silver Lining is a song from the musical “Sally”, composed by Jerome Kern with lyrics by Buddy DeSylva, and became one of Harris’ well-known recordings.
Jun 4, 1921 – Jul 7, 1921
Paul Whiteman
My Mammy
My Mammy is a popular song composed by Walter Donaldson, with lyrics by Joe Young and Sam M. Lewis. Whiteman’s rendition of this sentimental song further showcases the versatility of his band.
Jul 8, 1921 – Jul 29, 1921
Nora Bayes
Make Believe
Nora Bayes was a popular American singer, comedian, and actress. Make Believe is a song by Benny Davis and Jack Shilkret featuring Bayes’ emotive singing style and was a hit during the 1920s.
Jul 30, 1921 – Sep 9, 1921
Paul Whiteman
Cherie is a song composed by Irving Berlin, and Whiteman’s rendition showcases the band’s ability to perform a variety of musical styles, from jazz to ballads.
Sep 10, 1921 – Sep 23, 1921
Van & Schenck
Ain’t We Got Fun?
Van & Schenck were a popular American singing duo composed of Gus Van and Joe Schenck. Ain’t We Got Fun? is a lighthearted song composed by Richard A. Whiting, with lyrics by Raymond B. Egan and Gus Kahn, which highlights the duo’s harmonies and comedic timing.
Sep 24, 1921 – Oct 21, 1921
Paul Whiteman
Song of India
Song of India is an adaptation of the aria from the opera “Sadko” by Russian composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. Whiteman’s version is an instrumental arrangement demonstrating the band’s ability to blend classical and jazz elements.
Oct 22, 1921 – Nov 25, 1921
Ted Lewis
All By Myself
Ted Lewis was an American entertainer, bandleader, and clarinetist known for his signature catchphrase, “Is everybody happy?”. All By Myself is a song composed by Irving Berlin, which became a hit for Lewis and showcased his smooth vocal style.
Nov 26, 1921 – Dec 30, 1921
Paul Whiteman
Say It With Music
Say It With Music is a song by Irving Berlin. Paul Whiteman’s rendition highlights the band’s ability to perform upbeat and catchy tunes that resonated with audiences during the 1920s.
Dec 31, 1921 – Feb 10, 1922
Isham Jones
Wabash Blues
Isham Jones was an American bandleader, saxophonist, and composer known for leading one of the most popular dance bands during the 1920s and 1930s. Wabash Blues is a blues instrumental composed by Fred Meinken and Dave Ringle, which showcases the band’s tight ensemble playing and Jones’ skill as a bandleader.

The Biggest Pop Artists of 1921 include:
Nora Bayes, Benson Orchestra of Chicago, Paul Biese Trio, Henry Burr, Eddie Cantor, Frank Crumit, Carl Fenton, Marion Harris, Art Hickman and His Orchestra, Lewis James, Al Jolson, Billy Jones, Isham Jones and His Orchestra, Ted Lewis and His Band, Billy Murray, The Original Dixieland Jazz Band, Peerless Quartet, Prince’s Orchestra, Ben Selvin, Ed Smalle, Mamie Smith and Her Jazz Hounds, Aileen Stanley, Van & Schenck, Ethel Waters, Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra

Charts based on Billboard music charts.

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