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Sweet and Low-Down (1944)

Approved
76 min | Musical, Romance

After their annual free concert at Chicago's Dearborn Settlement, Benny Goodman and his band are packing up to move on to their next engagement at a military camp, when a kid, Tony Birch, steals Goodman's clarinet. Goodman and Popsie ...See moreAfter their annual free concert at Chicago's Dearborn Settlement, Benny Goodman and his band are packing up to move on to their next engagement at a military camp, when a kid, Tony Birch, steals Goodman's clarinet. Goodman and Popsie pursue him to a tenement flat where he has led them to hear his brother, Johnny Birch, play the trombone. Goodman offers him a job, over Popsie's protest, with the band. Aboard the train, Johnny accidentally enters the compartment of the band's singer, Pat Sterling, and gets his face slapped. At the military camp, which turns out to be a boy's military academy (which accounts for juvenile players such as Dickie Moore and Harry McKin running around with such titles as General and Major), Goodman finds a real audience in the jive-mad, jitterbug kids. Masquerading as a sweet, 16-year-old girl friend of one of the cadets who is, in reality, her nephew, Trudy Wilson meets her old friend Goodman who introduces her to Johnny, whose music she admired. However, Johnny brushes her off, thinking she is just a kid. Months later, while practicing for their opening at the exclusive Leopard Room in NYC, Johnny runs into Trudy, and is furious that she has followed him to New York. Pat tells Johnny that Trudy is the d├ębutante daughter of Norman Wilson, who runs the symphony association. Johnny decides she is out of his league but they fall for each other when he invites her to a jam session. At a swank party at Trudy's house, where Goodman plays the Mozart Quintet, one of the snobbish guests makes a remark when Johnny's brother Tony, sister Helen and his mother suddenly appear. A brawl ensues and Johnny, feeling he has disgraced himself in front of Trudy, flings his resignation at Goodman and stalks out. Pat's manager gets her to break with Goodman, sets up Johnny as a name band, and hires the Goodman band to join. Written by Les Adams See less
Director
Writers
Richard English (screen play) (original story) | Edward Haldeman (original story)
Producer
William LeBaron (as William Le Baron)
Cinematographer
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Status
Edit Released
Updated Sep 21, 1944

Release date
Sep 21, 1944 (United States)

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Cast

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48 cast members
Name STARmeter Known for
Benny Goodman
Benny Goodman Benny Goodman   See fewer
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Benny Goodman and His Orchestra
Benny Goodman and His Orchestra (as Benny Goodman and His Band) Benny Goodman and His Orchestra (as Benny Goodman and His Band)   See fewer
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Linda Darnell
Trudy Wilson Trudy Wilson   See fewer
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Jack Oakie
Popsy Popsy   See fewer
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Lynn Bari
Pat Stirling Pat Stirling   See fewer
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James Cardwell
Johnny Birch Johnny Birch   See fewer
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Allyn Joslyn
Lester Barnes Lester Barnes   See fewer
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John Campbell
Dixie Zang Dixie Zang   See fewer
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Roy Benson
Skeets McCormick Skeets McCormick   See fewer
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Dickie Moore
Military Cadet General 'Mogie' Cramichael Military Cadet General 'Mogie' Cramichael   See fewer
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Leonard Carey
The Wilsons' Butler (uncredited) The Wilsons' Butler (uncredited)   See fewer
Members only
Roger Clark
Friend (uncredited) Friend (uncredited)   See fewer
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William Colby
Trudy's Escort at the Tivoli (uncredited) Trudy's Escort at the Tivoli (uncredited)   See fewer
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Billy Dawson
Cadet Major Ellis (uncredited) Cadet Major Ellis (uncredited)   See fewer
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Morey Field
Band Drummer (uncredited) Band Drummer (uncredited)   See fewer
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Paul Graeff
Jiver (uncredited) Jiver (uncredited)   See fewer
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Jesse Graves
Waiter at Dance (uncredited) Waiter at Dance (uncredited)   See fewer
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Bill Harris
Band Trombone Player (uncredited) Band Trombone Player (uncredited)   See fewer
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Hal Hopper
Band Singer (uncredited) Band Singer (uncredited)   See fewer
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Beverly Hudson
Helen Birch (uncredited) Helen Birch (uncredited)   See fewer
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Robert Emmett Keane
Mr. Halliman - Tivoli Owner (uncredited) Mr. Halliman - Tivoli Owner (uncredited)   See fewer
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Hope Landin
Miss Johnson - Matron (uncredited) Miss Johnson - Matron (uncredited)   See fewer
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George Lessey
Norman Wilson (uncredited) Norman Wilson (uncredited)   See fewer
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Gerald Mackey
Tubby Cadet (uncredited) Tubby Cadet (uncredited)   See fewer
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Paul Marco
Undetermined Secondary Role (uncredited) Undetermined Secondary Role (uncredited)   See fewer
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Mae Marsh
Apartment House Tenant (uncredited) Apartment House Tenant (uncredited)   See fewer
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Ray Mayer
Mr. Coroner (uncredited) Mr. Coroner (uncredited)   See fewer
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Sam McDaniel
George - Janitor (uncredited) George - Janitor (uncredited)   See fewer
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Harry McKim
Cadet Colonel (uncredited) Cadet Colonel (uncredited)   See fewer
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Terry Moore
Snub-Nosed Girl on Dance Floor (uncredited) Snub-Nosed Girl on Dance Floor (uncredited)   See fewer
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Edmund Mortimer
Party Guest (uncredited) Party Guest (uncredited)   See fewer
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Woodrow Newbury
Specialty Singer (uncredited) Specialty Singer (uncredited)   See fewer
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William H. O'Brien
Waiter (uncredited) Waiter (uncredited)   See fewer
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The Pied Pipers
The Pied Pipers - Band Singers (uncredited) The Pied Pipers - Band Singers (uncredited)   See fewer
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Alexander Pollard
Waiter Delivering Note (uncredited) Waiter Delivering Note (uncredited)   See fewer
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Robin Raymond
Blonde (uncredited) Blonde (uncredited)   See fewer
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Merrill Rodin
Cadet Lieutenant (uncredited) Cadet Lieutenant (uncredited)   See fewer
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Roberta Smith
Girl (uncredited) Girl (uncredited)   See fewer
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Jess Stacy
Band Piano Player (uncredited) Band Piano Player (uncredited)   See fewer
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Larry Steers
Officer in Nightclub (uncredited) Officer in Nightclub (uncredited)   See fewer
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Alan Storr
Band Singer (uncredited) Band Singer (uncredited)   See fewer
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Buddy Swan
Tony Birch (uncredited) Tony Birch (uncredited)   See fewer
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Gloria Talbott
Teen-Ager on Dance Floor (uncredited) Teen-Ager on Dance Floor (uncredited)   See fewer
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Dorothy Vaughan
Mrs. Birch (uncredited) Mrs. Birch (uncredited)   See fewer
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Sid Weiss
Band Musician (uncredited) Band Musician (uncredited)   See fewer
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Cara Williams
Blonde (uncredited) Blonde (uncredited)   See fewer
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Al Winters
Waiter (uncredited) Waiter (uncredited)   See fewer
Members only
Clark Yocum
Band Singer (uncredited) Band Singer (uncredited)   See fewer
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Ratings Breakdown

6 / 10 | 134 votes