Harry James

The Uncollected Harry James & His Orchestra, Vol. 4 (1943-1946)

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The fourth of six LPs of Harry James radio appearances put out by Hindsight, this set (as with volumes one and two) covers the war years when James's big band was the most popular in the land. The 16 performances show that, although he had hits with many pop and vocal numbers, James was a particularly strong trumpeter who emphasized jazz in his live sets. Buddy Di Vito and Helen Forrest have two vocals apiece, there are individual features and shorter solos for altoist Willie Smith and the tenor of Corky Corcoran, and Allen Reuss has a rare electric guitar solo on "Honeysuckle Rose." James is in typically exciting form and among the more memorable selections on this program are "Easy Street," "It Must Be Jelly," "Peg of My Heart" and "Mr. Coed." All six entries in the series are easily recommended to swing fans.