Woody Herman & His Orchestra

1940-1941

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AllMusic Review by

During the period covered by this entry in the Classics Chronological series, the Woody Herman Orchestra was becoming well known as "the band that plays the blues" due to their hit recording of "The Woodchopper's Ball." Truth is, the Herman orchestra still played a large number of ballads (many of which featured Herman's singing) in addition to conventional swing charts. This CD begins with a couple features for Herman's clarinet in which he is joined by just the rhythm section; they were called "Woody Herman & His Four Chips." Despite the success of the heated "Chips' Boogie Woogie" and "Chips' Blues," those two numbers were the combo's only recordings. Otherwise, the set includes 16 Herman vocals plus spots for Muriel Lane and the Dillagens. None of Herman's sidemen during this era were major soloists, though Joe Bishop's spots on flügelhorn were a bit groundbreaking. The final four selections are from a V-Disc session. Woody Herman completists will want this set but, otherwise, one can pick up the two "Chips" recordings elsewhere.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
feat: Woody Herman
2:33
2
feat: Woody Herman
3:17
3 3:23
4 3:09
5 3:19
6 3:23
7 3:10
8
2:41
9
2:55
10 3:04
11 2:46
12 3:01
13
2:52
14 2:40
15 3:17
16 3:24
17 2:42
18 3:08
19 3:13
20 2:55
21 2:02
22
2:43
23 1:50
blue highlight denotes track pick