Great American Big Bands of the s & 40s: Tap Into The Upbeat Mood Of Post-Depression USA
The following is a list of swing bands I have found from the s, 30s, and 40s that meet either of the following criteria, preferably both. Perfect Swing: Best Swing Bands of the 20s 30s & 40s Great American Big Bands of the 30s & 40s Down South Camp Meeting - Fletcher Henderson. 9. The term “Big Band”, referring to Jazz, is vague but popular. for ballroom dance crowds and radio remote broadcasts into the early s. . They were familiar with the music and eager to meet the band bringing them this new music.
Therefore, his bands didn't only swing like mad; they also possessed clean attack and perfect intonation. A strong synergy existed between Henderson and Goodman.
There was a third important factor. No big band that hoped to swing could succeed without a great drummer and Goodman had the best, Gene Krupa.
I'm not referring to the Krupa who later became an early incarnation of an extroverted Rock star. In Krupa was instead a hardworking band drummer who was capable of driving a band with great intensity without excessive showmanship.
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- Big bands of the 30s and 40s music
- Swing music
He was the rhythmic "glue" of the band and with his rim shots gave the various sections a cutting edge. He laid down such a solid rhythmic base for soloists that it could support Long Island.
No one worked harder than Gene Krupa in making a success of the early Goodman band. Although it enjoyed musical success, commercial success was not yet a reality for the Goodman band in mid The band had closed a disastrous stand at the Hotel Roosevelt Guy Lombardo's turfafter receiving their notice on opening night for playing too loud and too fast. Then the Lets Dance radio show lost its sponsor Nabisco as a result an extended strike.
John Hammond, not one to discourage easily, arranged for the band to take an extended tour through the west. Though the band received limited acceptance at some locations Pittsburgh, for one! It reached a low point in Denver when Goodman was playing to en empty ballroom while Kay Kyser, featuring Ish-Kabibble and a band that played in novelty hats, was packing them in at a place nearby.
Goodman was ready to quit for good but decided to stick it out, somehow hoping things would improve once they crossed the Rockies. And improve they did, but not till the last stop of the tour.
Being so conditioned at this time, the band opened with some slow numbers but these were met with a very cool reception. When Bunny Berigan stood up and played the introduction the place exploded in excitement. He was among the very few jazz violinists of genuine worth.
When Billy Strayhorn joined Duke Ellington's Famous Orchestra as staff arranger- Duke called him 'my right arm'- he created Take the 'A' Train which soon became Duke's signature tune and one of the most widely known of jazz themes. The definitive version features the marvellous Ray Nance on muted and open trumpet. Known as 'Floor Show', Nance could dance, sing and play jazz violin or hot trumpet on demand.
It's a self-evident truism that Ellington was the greatest band leader-composer in jazz history. The next three tracks spot top soloists who formed their own groups to cash in on their popularity.Big Band / Swing / Jazz / 1940s
He built his orchestra into one of America's leading dance bands. Trumpeter Bunny Berigan was among the very best of white jazz trumpeters and fronted his rowdy unit quite successfully until he was laid low by alcoholism. Crosby, Bing's younger brother, was no musician but looked good on stage. The band's stance was influenced by its inner core of New Orleans musicians including the agreeable tenor-saxophonist and vocalist Eddie Miller.
Jimmie Lunceford combined music direction and athletics coaching in Memphis until he formed one of the finest of black bands, renowned for its musicianship and the arrangements of Sy Oliver, heard here playing solo trumpet. Joe Thomas is the saxophonist. Glenn Miller's music has retained its popularity, with a series of 'ghost' orchestras re-creating Miller band classics, including Jerry Gray's String of Pearls, with its strong attack and immaculate trombone motifs.
Miller's plane disappeared over the English Channel in December as he was on his way to join his Army big band in France. Cab Calloway bornthe 'king of hi-de-ho' was a manic vocalist but led a superb band, packed with brilliant soloists. He remains ebulliently if intermittently active.
His later Herds created some of the most memorable of big band recordings. Herman celebrated his 50th year as a band leader in Pee Wee Erwin is the trumpet soloist.
The swing era[ edit ] Main article: Swing era Benny Goodman, one of the first swing bandleaders to achieve widespread fame. In the Benny Goodman Orchestra had won a spot on the radio show " Let's Dance " and started showcasing updated repertoire featuring Fletcher Henderson arrangements. Goodman's slot was on after midnight in the East, and few people heard it. It was on earlier on the West Coast and developed the audience that later led to Goodman's Palomar Ballroom triumph.
At the Palomar engagement starting on August 21,audiences of young white dancers favored Goodman's rhythm and daring arrangements. The sudden success of the Goodman orchestra transformed the landscape of popular music in America.
Goodman's success with "hot" swing brought forth imitators and enthusiasts of the new style throughout the world of dance bands, which launched the "swing era" that lasted until The level of improvisation that the audience might expect varied with the arrangement, song, band, and band-leader. Typically included in big band swing arrangements were an introductory chorus that stated the theme, choruses arranged for soloists, and climactic out-choruses.
Some arrangements were built entirely around a featured soloist or vocalist. Some bands used string or vocal sections, or both. Hot swing music is strongly associated with the jitterbug dancing that became a national craze accompanying the swing craze. A subculture of jitterbuggers, sometimes growing quite competitive, congregated around ballrooms that featured hot swing music. A dance floor full of jitterbuggers had cinematic appeal; they were sometimes featured in newsreels and movies.
Audiences used to traditional "sweet" arrangements, such as those offered by Guy LombardoSammy KayeKay Kyser and Shep Fieldswere taken aback by the rambunctiousness of swing music. Swing was sometimes regarded as light entertainment, more of an industry to sell records to the masses than a form of art, among fans of both jazz and "serious" music.
Handy wrote that "prominent white orchestra leaders, concert singers and others are making commercial use of Negro music in its various phases. Some swing bandleaders saw opportunities in the Dixieland revival.
Between the poles of hot and sweet, middlebrow interpretations of swing led to great commercial success for bands such as those led by Artie ShawGlenn Miller and Tommy Dorsey. New York became a touchstone for national success of big bands, with nationally broadcast engagements at the Roseland and Savoy ballrooms a sign that a swing band had arrived on the national scene.
Various Artists - Anthology of Big Band Swing, - cypenv.info Music
With its Savoy engagement inthe Count Basie Orchestra brought the riff-and-solo oriented Kansas City style of swing to national attention. The Basie orchestra collectively and individually would influence later styles that would give rise to the smaller "jump" bands and bebop. It humiliated Goodman's band,  and had memorable encounters with the Ellington and Basie bands.
The Goodman band's Carnegie Hall Concert turned into a summit of swing, with guests from the Basie and Ellington bands invited for a jam session after the Goodman band's performance. Decline[ edit ] The early s saw emerging trends in popular music and jazz that would, once they had run their course, result in the end of the swing era. Vocalists were becoming the star attractions of the big bands.
Vocalist Ella Fitzgeraldafter joining the Chick Webb Orchestra inpropelled the band to great popularity and the band continued under her name after Webb's death in In vocalist Vaughn Monroe was leading his own big band and Frank Sinatra was becoming the star attraction of the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, inciting mass hysteria among bobby-soxers. Vocalist Peggy Lee joined the Goodman Orchestra in for a two-year stint, quickly becoming its star attraction on its biggest hits.
Some big bands were moving away from the swing styles that dominated the late s, for both commercial and creative reasons. Some of the more commercial big bands catered to more "sweet" sensibilities with string sections.
List of big bands
Some bandleaders such as John KirbyRaymond Scottand Claude Thornhill were fusing swing with classical repertoire. Lower manpower requirements and simplicity favored the rise of small band swing. In a Downbeat interview, Duke Ellington expressed dissatisfaction with the creative state of swing music;  within a few years he and other bandleaders would be delving into more ambitious, and less danceable, forms of orchestral jazz and the creative forefront for soloists would be moving into smaller ensembles and bebop.
The Earl Hines Orchestra in featured a collection of young, forward-looking musicians who were at the core of the bebop movement and would in the following year be in the Billy Eckstine Orchestrathe first big band to showcase bebop.