Artie Shaw: Moonray


Artie and the band broadcast regularly throughout 1939 from New York’s Hotel Pennsylvania, which is no doubt why these two broadcasts from there sound very much like another day at the office.

Shaw insisted, when recording for a label, in rehearsing meticulously every one of his solos. Here he obviously hasn’t and, disappointingly, his busking sounds, by his standards, routine.

Working for dancers, the material is largely bent towards them, but there’s an interesting Shaw original – “Man From Mars” – and it’s diverting to hear Helen Forrest sing “Any Old Time”, more often linked to Billie’s tragic stay with the band.

Shaw (cl) and various personnel. NY, 1939.