b. Herman Schertzer, 2 April 1909, New York City, New York, USA, d. 22 March 1977, New York City, New York, USA. After playing alto saxophone in a number of bands around the New York area, Shertzer (whose family name was Schertzer) became lead alto for Benny Goodman. In 1938 he joined Tommy Dorsey, switching a number of times back and forth between the two bands. In the 40s he played in the band led by Bunny Berigan and also appeared on a number of record sessions with such luminaries as Lionel Hampton and Billie Holiday. In the mid-40s he went into studio work where he remained for the next 30 years, making numerous record sessions with such artists as Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong. Shertzer was one of the unsung heroes of the swing era, soloing only rarely, but his solid and skilful playing made him one of the most sought-after lead altos of his time.
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