This 54-min. CD (16 tracks) is comprised of two radio shows from October 1945. Woody Herman was quickly rising to fame at this time, and this version of his orchestra came to be known as the famous ”First Herd”. It was packed with new talented soloists who were destined for their own stardom, including tenor saxophonist Flip Phillips, trumpeters Neal Hefti and the Candoli Brothers, trombonist Bill Harris, bassist Chubby Jackson, guitarist Billy Bauer and drummer Dave Tough. The repertoire consists of popular tunes of the day and many Woody Herman originals. Woody Herman uses two top arrangers on this recording: Ralph Burns and Neal Hefti. Besides the fine big-band performance, these sessions are of great historical importance, as they represent the period of Woody Herman’s spectacular break-through onto the world jazz scene.
Woody Herman - playing all clarinet solos and alto-saxophone solos (and some vocals), Sam Marowitz and John La Porta - alto-saxophones, Pete Mondello and Flip Phillips - tenor-saxophones, Skippy DeSair - baritone-saxophone, Pete Candoli, Sonny Berman, Neal Hefti, Conte Candoli, and Irving Lewis - trumpets, Bill Harris, Ed Kiefer, and Ralph Pfeffner - trombones, Tony Aless - piano, Chubby Jackson - double bass, Billy Bauer - guitar, Dave Tough - drums, Marjorie Hyams - vibraphone, Frances Wayne - Featured singer