Anyone who questions the drawing power of a big band today should have been at Memorial Hall in Melrose, Mass. on Saturday evening, November 12. The American Big Band Preservation Society (ABBPS) sponsored its first major fundraiser concert and dance called “The Big Bands Are Back” to help fund in-school band music programs in Melrose. Continue reading
Anita O’Day was one of our premier jazz and big band artist who lived her life without ever looking back – as described in the award-winning film documentary Anita O’Day – The Life of A Jazz Singer and her autobiography High Times Hard Times . Both are no- holds-barred accounts of her career’s ups and downs, including a 20-year addiction to heroin and alcohol.
Jazz SInger is filled with vivid, candid images of many of her compatriots in the world of jazz and big bands. Some of her more fascinating observations: Continue reading
And so it came to pass, during one evening’s performance
that the Sidemen were assailed by Doubts – and Darkness
descended on the Bandstand. And the Leader turned to his
quaking flock, and saith, “Mv children, why do you doubt me?
Have I not led you through the Valley of the Loading Dock to
the Great Land of Long Breaks, Hot Meals, and Undertime ?
Have I not banished the dreaded Macarena from the Set List
and allowed thee to Blow on selected numbers? Continue reading