Although the war was over, the United States still had considerable numbers of men in its Armed Forces and continued to supply them with the music from "back home" in the form of specially recorded programmes under the auspicies of the Armed Forces Radio Service. These 16-inch records playing at 33 and 1/3 rpm offered programmes of 15 and 30 minutes duration usually from live performances. The music on this CD is taken from three such programmes recorded at the Aquarium Restaurant over a period of just three weeks. The tunes that are played include material that had been in the band’s repertoire since the early days augmented by some new compositions. Although he was no longer a member of the band, Buck Clayton’s arrangements still figure strongly and the arrangements of Jimmy Mundy that had been in the band book for some time were also featured. The programmes show variety in pace and style and are laced with vocals from Jimmy Rushing and Ann Moore. The band itself, showed signs of influence from the emerging bop style but it never lost its ability to swing whatever the tempo. It could generate passion on the upbeat numbers without ever losing the essential underlying swing for which it had initially been recognised.
Emmett Berry, Harry Edison, Ed Lewis, Joe Newman, Snooky Young (tp), Ted Donnelly, J.J.Johnson, George Matthews, Eli Robinson (tb), Rudy Rutherford (cl & as), Preston Love (as), Illinois Jacquet, Buddy Tate (ts), Jack Washington (bs), Count Basie (p), Freddie Green (g), Walter Page (b), Jo Jones (dr), Ann Moore (vo 3,8,12 &17), Jimmy Rushing (vo 6 & 14)