Ellington kept his orchestra together in a changing economic landscape, continuing to create memorable music and expanding his compositional horizons.
Marc Myers' mention of the late arranger Bill Finegan yesterday reminded me of a show I did about Tommy Dorsey's post-World War II orchestra for The Big Bands.
*Mosaic Records will release a three-CD Select set of mid-1970s RCA Toshiko Akiyoshi-Lew Tabackin big-band recordings later this year.Elsewhere around the jazz blogosphere this past week…
Gil Evans: the decade after the masterpieces with Miles Davis.
Duke Ellington's 1941 musical Jump for Joy was a cultural milestone, an assertive, satirical riposte to the servile depictions of African-Americans.
We'll hear music from Louis Jordan, Kitty Kallen with Jimmy Dorsey, Sam Donahue's Navy band, and much more.
In honor of the holiday weekend, we're posting both parts of last year's "American Popular Song and World War II".
The inspiration came from a late-night party, a convergence of Hollywood glamour and early civil-rights activism with one of America's greatest jazz orchestras.
As the buzz about the Woody Herman big band grew, its leader told Philips producer Jack Tracy, "Don't give this one a number. Just call it 'the Swingin' Herd.'"