James Last is the most successful big band leader of all time. Over the past four decades Last has released over 190 records, sold over 100 millions albums, and has been showered with awards - to date he has been awarded 17 platinum and 206 gold discs.
Coming up with the idea of arranging chart hits in an accessible, big band style, he found a massive audience for his music. It was a simple idea, but it has made James Last, the Gentleman of Music, the superstar that he is today.
This autobiography takes us back to Bremen, Germany and the birth of James Last or Hans Last his birth name.
Last's illustrious career began at age ten when he first took piano lesson and then by the time he was seventeen he had joined a dance orchestra.
In the 1950s he was voted best bassist in Germany for three years running and, shortly after, he became the in-house arranger for Polydor Records.
Now with homes in both Florida and Germany, Last spends time with his beloved family and continues to keep his millions of fans happy with his unique brand of uplifting music. This candid and charming tale is a must read for all James Last fans - music's best kept secret has finally chosen to tell his story.
It was a simple idea, but it made James Last hugely successful. He came up with the idea of arranging chart hits in an accessible big band style and found a massive audience for what turned into an astonishing series of records down the years. Having showed great promise as a child, James joined a dance orchestra in 1946 when he was just 17, was voted best bassist in Germany three years running, and went on to become the in-house arranger for Polydor Records. His first album set the tone, as 1965's Non-Stop Dancing featured a medley of popular chart numbers linked by an infectious dance beat and atmospheric audience sounds. With his years of experience in the business, he knew exactly how to shape his sound and was shrewd enough to spot that there was a gap in the market for his kind of unpretentious party music. Not only was he right, but it made him a superstar of the big band world. But it has not always been easy. Even with all those albums and trademark cover versions selling so well, he's only had two hit singles. It hasn't stopped him winning awards, including Billboard's "Star of the Year" gong in 1976 and a German Echo prize in 1994. With millions of loyal fans around the world, he continues to keep them happy with his unique brand of uplifting music.