C-melody saxophonist Frankie Trumbauer
left Paul Whiteman's Orchestra in 1937 after a notable ten-year association with Whiteman. Tram formed a big band that lasted for nearly two years, but they did not record any commercially released sides. He did head an orchestra from 1939-40 that made it onto records. The earlier big band fortunately did record a series of radio transcriptions, and 16 of its best are on this valuable collector's LP put out by the IAJRC. In addition to Trumbauer
, the key soloists include trumpeter Manny Klein
(in prime form), clarinetist Jimmy Oliver
and pianist Charlie LaVere
, who was responsible for many of the arrangements. With the exception of a vocal apiece by Trumbauer
and Bill Shaw, the music is all instrumental, and there are many highlights, including "Stars and Stripes Forever," "Dippermouth Blues," "Portrait of a Pretzel," the speedy "Tempo Takes a Holiday," and "Big Butter and Egg Man." This album (which has not yet been reissued on CD) is well worth searching for by swing and classic jazz collectors.