Roadband (1948)

Woody Herman

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Roadband (1948) Review

by Scott Yanow

Woody Herman's Second Herd was one of his finest orchestras but, unlike the First Herd, it was a money loser, and the Musicians Union strike of 1948 kept it out of commercial recordings for much of that important year. Fortunately, a few LPs of broadcasts (including this one) show just how strong a unit it was. Solos by the likes of tenors Stan Getz, Zoot Sims, and Al Cohn, and baritonist Serge Chaloff (who together formed the "Four Brothers" that year) plus the vocals of Woody Herman and Mary Ann McCall, made this a memorable outfit, who play at their best on this set imported from Scotland. It is a particular joy to hear The Second Herd performing so much material that they otherwise never recorded.

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