Stompin' at the Savoy

How Chick Webb Became the King of Drums

2021 Florida Book Awards Silver Medalist

Though a disability stunted his growth and left him with a hunched back, William Henry “Chick” Webb did not let that get in the way of his musical pursuits. Even as a young child, Chick saw the world as one big drum, pounding out rhythms on everything from stair railings to pots and pans. His love of percussion brought him to the big time as an influential big band leader.

This picture-book biography details the life of black American jazz drummer Chick Webb, who in the 1930s led one of the big bands of the swing era, earning him the nickname the “King of the Savoy.”

Format List Price Your Price Qty
$16.99 $16.99
$28.99 $28.99
Interest Level Grade 1 - Grade 4
Reading Level Grade 2
Dewey 782.42165092
Lexile AD610L
ATOS Reading Level
Guided Reading Level Q
Language English
Publisher Sleeping Bear Press
Available Formats Hardcover (9781534110977), PDF (9781534178908), Hosted ebook (9781534179059)
Copyright 2021
Number of Pages 32
Dimensions 9 x 11
Graphics Full-color illustrations
  • 2022-2023 South Carolina Book Awards , Nominated
  • Florida Book Awards – Silver Medalist in the Younger Children’s Literature Category , Runner-up, 2021

Horn Book - Stompin’ at the Savoy

“Donohue’s upbeat text includes lots of onomatopoeia, emphasizing the rhythms that kept Webb’s “heart beat[ing] in swing time.” Freeman’s energetic illustrations keep pace with the narrative and ably convey Webb’s indomitable spirit.”

Publisher's Weekly - Stompin' at the Savoy: How Chick Webb Became the King of Drums

“Colorfully accentuated onomatopoeia and musical notes punctuate this profile of brilliant self-taught drummer William “Chick” Webb…”

Kirkus Reviews - Stompin' at the Savoy

The review will go live on their site on 11/18/20. “Freeman’s illustrations are full of movement, musical staves and notes swirling across the spreads in visual accentuation of Webb’s swing beat… An effervescent celebration.”

Stompin' at the Savoy - Coloring Pages

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Author: Moira Rose Donohue

Moira Rose Donohue has written over 35 books for children, including Lions & Cheetahs & Rhinos OH MY! She lives in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Illustrator: Laura Freeman

Laura Freeman has illustrated over 30 children’s books, including Hidden Figures, the Nikki & Deja series, and Fancy Party Gowns. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia.

  • Beginning of Text
  • More about Chick
Full-color illustrations