Harry James

Harry James and His New Jazz Band, Vol. 2

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The second volume of radio transcription and "live from the Hollywood Palladium" performances by the otherwise undocumented 1956 Harry James Nonet is the equal of the first CD. These 20 performances include such rousers as "Roll 'Em," "Mack the Knife," "Six, Two, and Even," and "The Great Lie." The 40-year-old leader/trumpeter is in excellent form and joined by such soloists as altoist Willie Smith, Juan Tizol on valve trombone, and tenor saxophonist Herbie Steward, with Neal Hefti providing the arrangements. Peggy King takes four vocals and drummer Buddy Rich is effective as a singer on three other songs. These two discs add to the recorded legacy of Harry James, who tends to get placed only in the 1940s despite the fact that he still played well for a couple additional decades.