Recorded over two nights at the Paradise Restaurant in New York, this album provides an interesting insight into the early months of Glenn Miller and his orchestra, moments before they became one of the most popular bands of the swing era. Tracks 1-10 were recorded on the 18th June, and 11-19 recorded on the 25th, and at the time were broadcast nationwide on NBC radio. The audio quality is, as one would expect from a performance recorded 80 years ago, not excellent, but the vocals and solos are clear, and you can still hear the smooth harmonies in the woodwinds and brass section.
In terms of personnel, Willie Schwartz and Tex Beneke, who would both become long serving members of the orchestra, are both present, as is the orchestra’s pianist, Chummy MacGregor. Even though in its inception, the orchestra plays with great vitality and verve, especially on “I Know That You Know” and “Why’d Ya Make Me Fall in Love”. Particularly interesting is “Intro Into Showboat Medley”, which would later become one of Miller’s most famous pieces, “Moonlight Serenade”. Both performances are very enjoyable, and capture the formative years of the swing era well.
Introduction; The Butcher Boy; Don’t Wake Up My Heart; Cowboy From Brooklyn; My Best Wishes; I Know That You Know; On the Sentimental Side; On the Alamo; The Dipsy Doodle; Closing Theme; Opening Theme; Why’d Ya Make Me Fall in Love; Cathedral in the Pines; Down South Camp Meeting; At Your Beck and Call; Intro Into Showboat Medley; Moonshine Over Kentucky; Bugle Call Rag; Closing Theme (56.09)
Miller (tb); Brad Jenney (tb); Al Mastren (tb); Bob Price (t); Johnny Austin (t); Gasparre Rebito (t); Willie Schwartz (cl); Tex Beneke (ts, v); Ray Eberle (v); Gail Reese (v); Chummy MacGregor (p); Rolly Bundock (b); Bob Spangler (d); and others. New York, 1938.
Sounds of Yester Year DSOY2113