[Dixielandjazz] Big Bands

LARRY'S Signs and Large Format Printing sign.guy at charter.net
Sat Dec 4 13:01:37 PST 2004

I didn't remember the name but the Sessions Big Band plays for $15/man and
does have some pretty good musicians in it.  That band would be better off
in a larger place.  And you are right they are a "new Style" big band.  The
easiest way to tell the new style from the old without even hearing them  is
look at the bari sax player.  If he has a clarinet the chances are is that
it is an old style (Goodman, Miller).  I played Bari and Lead Tenor in a new
style band (Called a stage band) with the AF and never played clarinet once.
New style stage band almost never has a clarinet in the entire lineup.

There are musicians out there that are very hungry to play.  They have day
gigs and sometimes very good ones.  Dr.s and bank presidents.

Another really good group in town has a Bank CEO on drums.  The musicians
are the best in town except for the sax and drummer who are buddies.  Now
someone is backing that group and I don't blame the pros from using the
hacks to make a living.  You do what you have to do.  If I won the lottery I
would have two really good "pet" bands whose goal in life was to make me
look really good.  I would pay for rehearsals and subsidies the gigs and if
I paid really well there isn't one of you who wouldn't line up for the gig.

The only thing that I have against some of these guys is that they sound so
bad. People are very tight with money here.  I have said this before -
people don't give a rip what a band sounds like a lot of the time.  I had a
yellow page ad for a long time.  True I got calls but they always asked
first how much I charged then hung up and didn't give me even a chance to
sell them.  I think most of them were just confirming that they had hired
the cheapest band in town.  I eventually gave up on the YP as a bad joke.

One of the Big bands has a lot of guys in it that are pretty good musicians.
They pay a guy to rehearse the band and someone to set up/tear down.
Several of the guys have been very successful in business and don't need the
money.  The lead trumpet player is a Bank CEO and his soon to be wife is a
teacher.  There is no one in the band except the lead tenor player (Kenton
band alumnus) who is a real pro.  The band rehearses, makes CD's sounds good
and plays for free.  They don't need the bucks.  They take a couple of
playing vacations to resorts.  Everyone has fun and the band sounds pretty
good and they donate their proceeds to charity each year .

The point is there are a lot of guys, because of the musical climate, who
want to play but because there are more musicians than demand will work
cheap.  It's all the bottom line.

I take my computer out and with another guy perform.  We make good bucks
doing it for two reasons.  First we are affordable and second we entertain.
Do we sound good.  That's debatable.  Many would say that the computer
doesn't sound like a good rhythm section.  It's inflexible.  It sounds the
same.  etc.  All true but they keep hiring me back.  I want to perform, I
want to make money so I do what I can to make it happen.  I think we pull it
off because both of us are good musicians but we sing and talk to the people
too and work the crowd a little.  The computer is more of a musician issue
than a public issue.
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Beth Villanyi" <bethv at portafortuna.com>
To: <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
Sent: Friday, December 03, 2004 6:09 PM
Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] Big Bands

> What's wrong with liking both? I can't sit still when either are playing -
> either have to be dancing in my chair or on the dance floor. BUT - the
> current definition of Big Band is slightly different from what I like. I
> love the 40's style - Benny Goodman, Glenn Miller, Artie Shaw, Harry
> the Dorseys, etc.
> And like Steve Martin said, "You can't listen to the banjo and be
> I say the same for all of Dixieland music.
> What I can't stand is the new big band style that is so loud with
> brass similar to Doc Severnsen. I heard a band called Sessions Big Band in
> St. Louis last year at a little bar near Busch Stadium. The band was good
> musically, but they had 5 of everything, used mics, and played in a bar
> was long and narrow. I felt like the guy in the commercial whose hair is
> blown back by the sound coming from his TV. We couldn't stay for more than
> one set and all had headaches when we emerged from the din.
> Beth
> ----- Original Message ----- 
> From: "Fr M J (Mike) Logsdon" <mjl at ix.netcom.com>
> To: <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
> Sent: Friday, December 03, 2004 12:54 PM
> Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] Big Bands
> > Change in thought here, sorry....
> >
> > How many of you were like me, and, as a young person, was introduced to
> > the world of OKOM (loosely defined) by the Big Bands as gererally known
> > (mid-30s to mid-40s, Miller, Dorseys, etc)?  It was literally years (10,
> > maybe 15) before I could hear a dixie band with anything but loathing.
> > Then, the light dawned in the early 90s, and now I can't stand Big
> >
> > Anyone else with a similar story?,
> >
> > --
> > Etc,
> >
> > Fr M J "Mike" Logsdon
> > North American Old Roman Catholic Church (Utrecht Succession)
> > www.naorc.org
> >
> >
> >
> _______________________________________________
> Dixielandjazz mailing list
> Dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com
> http://ml.islandnet.com/mailman/listinfo/dixielandjazz

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