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Big band music




Big Bands, Jazz Vocals, and Bop with Billy Eckstine.

Billy Eckstine is a jazz singer and big band leader. After playing in the Earl Hines Band, he formed his own band, which was involved in the development of bop. He worked with legends such as Dizzy Gillespie, Sarah Vaughan and Charlie Parker. Eckstine continues to perform as a singer. He joins the show to discuss his life and career.


Jazz Trombonist Al Grey

Philadelphia-based trombonist Al Grey talks about making a living in jazz and his experience playing with Count Basie's big band.


Melba Liston On Being a Woman Musician.

Trombonist Melba Liston is one the few women to find success as a musician, arranger, and composer in the world of jazz. Liston has worked with artists as diverse as Dizzy Gillespie and Aretha Franklin. After spending five years living in Jamaica, Liston has returned to the United States and formed a new big band, the seventeen-piece "Melba Liston and Company."


Jazz Saxophonist and Composer Frank Foster

The accomplished musician made his mark as a member of Count Basie's band. Foster later earned his Ph.D. in music and worked as an educator. He now leads his own big band, an endeavor he admits is difficult to sustain financially.


Big Bandleader Artie Shaw.

Artie Shaw is a legendary big bandleader and clarinetist. His band was one of the most popular of the 1940s. Since then Shaw has written books, worked as a film producer, and retired from playing. in 1980 he organized a new band to play his works and arrangements.


Keeping Kansas City Jazz Alive.

A live concert featuring 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.


Remembering Woody Herman.

Band leader Woody Herman. This interview was originally recorded in May, 1986. Herman, who died on Thursday, 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.


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