Mosaic Records has released Classic Earl Hines Sessions 1928-1945. a seven-disc showcase for the jazz pianist and bandleader. Hines' right hand played lines in bright, clear octaves -- and his left hand had a mind of its own.
Joost Buis' tunes are clean and true, and still let weird details nibble at the edges on Zooming. That sort of despoiling playfulness typifies a lot of Hollands improvised music: Just because you're serious doesn't mean you have to be serious all the time.
In the 1930s and '40s, Artie Shaw's band ranked with the Benny Goodman, Jimmy Dorsey and Glenn Miller bands in popularity. But he largely rejected pop tunes and stuck with music by composers such as George Gershwin and Irving Berlin. Fresh Air remembers one of jazz's greatest clarinetists and big-band leaders with excerpts from a 1985 interview.
In addition to newsreels, cartoon and coming attractions, movie studios used to show musical shorts before feature films. Warner Brothers has just released a six-DVD set of these shorts called Big Bands, Jazz and Swing. Classical musical critic Lloyd Schwartz says the new set is wroth checking out.
Bandleader and clarinetist Artie Shaw died Dec. 29 at the age of 94, apparently of natural causes. In the 1930s and '40s, Shaw's band ranked with the Goodman, Dorsey and Miller bands in popularity. But he largely rejected pop tunes and stuck with music by composers like Porter, Gershwin and Berlin. We remember Shaw.
Band leader Woody Herman. Herman was the leader of numerous big bands, all variously called The Thundering Herd. His bands were noted for their dazzling improvisation combined with their incisive ensemble playing. He died in 1987. (ORIGINAL BROADCAST: May 1986 and 8/19/986)
Kansas City pianist Jay McShann. As a big band leader in the 40s and 50s, McShann helped start the careers of jazz stars like Charlie Parker and Big Joe Turner. He performs "When I Grow To Old To Dream." Kansas City pianist Jay McShann. As a big band leader in the 40s and 50s, McShann helped start the careers of jazz stars like Charlie Parker and Big Joe Turner. He performs "When I Grow To Old To Dream." (rebroadcast from 10/8/87)