- Compilation Produced By: Dan Rivard
- Digital Audio Restoration: Ken Robertson
- Liner Notes: Eric Berman & Gary Theroux
- Released: March 14, 2006
- Originally Released: 2003
- Label: Collectables Records
Description by OLDIES.com:
Claude Thornhill led one of the best-loved and critically-acclaimed big bands of the late 30s, 40s and early 50s, known for its progressive arrangements, unique instrumentation and influential personnel (including Lee Konitz, Red Rodney, Gil Evans and Gerry Mulligan). Rather than being just another all-hit collection, this CD explores the full depth and range of Claude Thornhill's legendary recordings as a piano-playing big band master for the Columbia label during his golden era - 1937 to 1947.
Recorded between 1937 & 1947.
Personnel: Buddy Hughes, Gene Williams, James Farrell, Terry Allen , Barry McKinley, Lillian Lane, Maxine Sullivan, Bob Jenney, Buddy Stewart (vocals).
Liner Note Authors: Eric Berman; Gary Theroux.
Recording information: 06/14/1937-11/06/1947.
Arranger: Claude Thornhill.
Constantly underrated during their '40s prime -- though respected by jazz fans including Miles Davis -- the Claude Thornhill band paved the way for the softer-toned cool jazz of the '50s with a set of arrangements (by Thornhill himself or Gil Evans). The Rare Columbia Recordings collects some of the orchestra's more obscure charts, though not the experimental titles that a Gil Evans fan would relish. After slotting a pair of early chart favorites ("Harbor Lights," "Ebb Tide"), the compilers include Thornhill versions of several novelties made famous by other leaders -- "(Ting-a-Ling) The Bad Humor Man" from Kay Kyser, "Orange Blossom Lane" from Glenn Miller, "If You Were the Only Girl in the World" from Perry Como, "Rose O'Day (The Filla-Ga-Dusha Song)" from Kate Smith. Other selections fare better, usually soft-toned standards such as "Night and Day," "Something to Remember You By," or "Yours Is My Heart Alone." ~ John Bush