November 21, 2011

Billy May - keeping the Big Band homefires burning.

Something more along the lines of the traditional 40's-style Big Band. Billy May and His Orchestra, live at the Hollywood Palladium and recorded on December 21, 1953.

May was involved in a number of bands in the 1930's and 40's. Most notably the Glenn Miller Orchestra. As the popularity of the traditional Big Band waned after World War 2, May became a much sought after composer-arranger, working with such luminaries as Frank Sinatra.

Not as bombastic or frantic as Stan Kenton (even though they were label mates on Capitol), May took the tempo down a few notches into what became known as "Bachelor Pad" territory.

This 1953 broadcast is a good introduction if you aren't familiar.

. . .and the pitcher of Martinis is an option.

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