More Sounds of the Great Swing Bands

More Sounds of the Great Swing Bands

by Glen Gray



These recordings are taken from the first generation of big band stereo re-creations, a program undertaken by Capitol Records in the late '50s that continued into the early '60s. The purpose was to provide accurate renderings of big band favorites of the 1930s and 1940s in stereo sound. Some original bandleaders, such as Harry James and Artie Shaw, were recruited to re-create their own hits, but most of the work was done by two leaders, Glen Gray and Freddy Martin. Gray provided the hotter swing music for Capitol, whereas Martin recorded the more conservative and nostalgic fare. This Eric CD combines a generous selection of 22 tracks from Martin's recordings, transferred in excellent sound from the original three-track stereo masters. It includes re-creations of hits ranging from two of Glen Gray's own ("Blue Star" and "Smoke Rings," the latter being the only track in mono) to those of Glenn Miller, Woody Herman, Tommy Dorsey, and even an up-tempo rendering of John Philip Sousa's "The Stars and Stripes Forever." One may wonder why this would even be desirable, as the mono originals of most of these things are widely available on various packages. Listen and you'll figure it out -- these are just simply outstanding re-creations. They are far from stale imitations of the "real thing," and are pulled off with an amazing resemblance to the original and a good degree of flair. These recordings were made by top Hollywood studio musicians of the era. In general, More Sounds of the Great Swing Bands is a highly enjoyable collection of swing dance band favorites and is highly recommended as representative of its era, even though it is a retrospective view. Excellent notes are provided by reissue producer Tom Daly.

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