GILBERT LAFAILLE

GILBERT LAFAILLE

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    À propos

    Glenn Miller was born in Clarinda, Iowa, on March 1, 1904. He went to school in North Platts, Nebraska. At the age of 13 he bought a trombone with money he had carned with milking cows for $ 2 a week.

    He attended high school in Fort Morgan (1920-24) and studied at the University of Colorado (1924-26). His favorite instrument was the trombone and even at this young age he was good enough to play in the Boyd Senter Band. After leaving college he had the opportunity to play with Ben Pollack Band which at the time included such well known musicians as Benny Goodman and Gil Robin (alto saxophone), Fud Livingston (tenor saxophone) and Dick Morgan (guitar), and therefore moved to California.
    - In September 1926, the Pollack Band went into the recording studio and worked on «When I First Met Mary» and «Deed I Do». These were probably the first record arrangements that Glenn Miller wrote. He stayed with the band until it went to New York at the end of 1928. He married his early love, Helen Burger, and moved with her to Manhattan.
    - In the coming years, Glenn Miller developed his talent by working with the great names such as the Dorsey Brothers, Jack Teagarden and Gene Krupa. The first record by the Glenn Miller Band was sold in 1935.
    It included Glenn Miller and Jack Jenny (trombone), Bunny Berigan and Charlie Spivak (trumpet), Johnny Mince and Eddie Miller (saxophone) and Claude Thornhill (piano). But success didn’t come easy and Glenn Miller had to accept
    an offer from the expatriate British bandleader, Ray Noble, to join his new band, together with Charlie Spivak and Pee Wee Irwin (trumpet), Wil Bradley (trombone), Johnny Mince and Buddy Freeman (saxophone), Claude Thornhill (piano) and Al Browly (vocals).
    - In 1937 Glenn Miller tried again and the Glenn Miller Band brought out a few records and also went on tour. Yet once again the attempt was doomed. He could not keep the orchestra together and had to let all but 4 musicians go.
    The promotor Si Shibman nevertheless convinced Miller to give another try, and Miller built up his new orchestra on the basis of the four remaining musicians Hal McIntyre (alto), Rolly Bundock (bass), Chummy Mac Gregor (piano) and Bob Price. Among others, he took on the singer Ray Eberle as well as the tenor saxophonist Tex Bencke, who later played an outstanding roll. This time Miller was lucky enough to be supported by one of the most important agencies of the General Artists Corporation and to obtain a record contract with RCA Victor’s Budget Bluebird Label. Glenn Miller again went on tour and took the singer Marion Hutton along too. Times nonetheless, were hard until the big breakthrough came in 1939.

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