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Beethoven Wrote It, But It Swings

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All Music Guide - Richard S. Ginell
This is a weird little curio from another time and another state of mind, a compendium of 23 78s from the big band era that took classical themes and tried to convert them into vehicles for swing bands. In the 1930s and '40s, the most famous classical pieces were more familiar to the man in the street than they are now, and there was a lot of blather about their alleged desecration in the hands of those who played that "sinful jazz music." Yet from the perspective of 50-60 years on, these swing-band treatments actually seem pretty tame compared to the emotional and physical power of the original classical sources. Everyone is on their best behavior -- the American ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Richard S. Ginell
This is a weird little curio from another time and another state of mind, a compendium of 23 78s from the big band era that took classical themes and tried to convert them into vehicles for swing bands. In the 1930s and '40s, the most famous classical pieces were more familiar to the man in the street than they are now, and there was a lot of blather about their alleged desecration in the hands of those who played that "sinful jazz music." Yet from the perspective of 50-60 years on, these swing-band treatments actually seem pretty tame compared to the emotional and physical power of the original classical sources. Everyone is on their best behavior -- the American inferiority complex toward European culture was definitely in play -- and not much of it really swings. Even Benny Goodman & his Orchestra essays Paganini, Prokofiev, Mendelssohn and Ravel in utterly conventional swing fashion; Jimmie Lunceford's outfit is wasted on a Chopin Prelude; and the Woody Herman Second Herd's "Sabre Dance" sounds like a Borscht Belt stunt. However Gil Evans' distinctive subtle voicings for Claude Thornhill & his Orchestra give Tchaikovsky's "Arabian Dance" a big edge over the band's earlier vintage treatments of Brahms and Schumann. Other bands represented here include those of Glenn Miller, John Kirby, Les Brown, Xavier Cugat, Red Nichols, Al Donahue, Arnold Johnson, Will Bradley, Dolly Dawn & Her Dawn Patrol, and the combos of Adrian Rollini and Raymond Scott. If you want a really fearless, original, all-American swing band translation of the classics, Spike Jones had a better idea.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/20/1996
  • Label: Sony
  • UPC: 074646226827
  • Catalog Number: 62268

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Beethoven Wrote It, But It Swings - Dolly Dawn & Her Dawn Patrol (2:50)
  2. 2 Beethoven Riffs On - John Kirby (2:49)
  3. 3 Bolero - Benny Goodman (2:39)
  4. 4 Träumerei - Claude Thornhill (2:47)
  5. 5 Marche Slav - Les Brown (3:10)
  6. 6 Farandole (L'Arlesienne Suite) - Xavier Cugat (2:41)
  7. 7 Sole Mio - Red Nichols (2:46)
  8. 8 Minute Waltz - John Kirby (2:31)
  9. 9 Caprice Xxiv - Benny Goodman (2:47)
  10. 10 Martha - Adrian Rollini (2:58)
  11. 11 Beethoven Bounce - Al Donahue (3:17)
  12. 12 Humoresque - Glenn Miller (2:39)
  13. 13 In the Hall of the Mountain King from "Peer Gynt" - Will Bradley (2:59)
  14. 14 Bounce of the Sugar Plum Fairy - John Kirby (2:22)
  15. 15 Naïla - Arnold Johnson (2:27)
  16. 16 Arabian Dance from "The Nutcracker" - Claude Thornhill (4:23)
  17. 17 Chopin Prelude No. 7 - Jimmie Lunceford (2:50)
  18. 18 Spring Song - Benny Goodman (2:27)
  19. 19 The Quinette Plays Carmen - Raymond Scott Orchestrette (2:39)
  20. 20 Procession of the Sardar - Les Brown (3:13)
  21. 21 Hungarian Dance No. 5 - Claude Thornhill (2:40)
  22. 22 And the Wolf - Benny Goodman (3:10)
  23. 23 Sabre Dance - Woody Herman (2:33)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Frank Perry Trombone
Buster Bailey Clarinet
Will Bradley Trombone, Track Performer
Les Brown Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Track Performer
Serge Chaloff Baritone Saxophone
Xavier Cugat Violin, Track Performer
Stan Getz Tenor Saxophone
Benny Goodman Clarinet, Track Performer
Woody Herman Clarinet, Track Performer
John Kirby Bass, Track Performer
Jimmie Lunceford Track Performer
Mel Powell Piano
Willie Smith Alto Saxophone
Claude Thornhill Piano, Track Performer
Gerald Wilson Trumpet
Charlie Shavers Trumpet
Cootie Williams Trumpet
Red Nichols Cornet, Track Performer
Billy Butterfield Trumpet
Lee Castle Trumpet
Lyle "Rusty" Dedrick Trumpet
Ziggy Elman Trumpet
Peanuts Hucko Tenor Saxophone
Lou McGarity Trombone
Hal McIntyre Alto Saxophone
Ray McKinley Drums
Abe Most Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
Vido Musso Tenor Saxophone
Adrian Rollini Vibes, Track Performer
Ernie Royal Trumpet
Earl Swope Trombone
Joe Thomas Tenor Saxophone
Don Lamond Drums
George Paxton Tenor Saxophone
Paul Collins Drums
Si Zentner Trombone
Russell Procope Alto Saxophone
Shorty Rogers Trumpet
Herbie Steward Tenor Saxophone
Michael Bruce Tenor Saxophone
George Kennedy Trumpet
Dolly Dawn Vocals, Track Performer
Trummy Young Trombone
Moses Allen Bass
Red Ballard Trombone
Bus Bassey Tenor Saxophone
George Berg Tenor Saxophone
Artie Bernstein Bass
Russell Bowles Trombone
Vernon Brown Trombone
Earl Caruthers Alto Saxophone, Baritone Saxophone
Russ Case Trumpet
Big Sid Catlett Drums
Mahlon Clark Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
Tony Colicchio Guitar
Ralph Collier Drums
Conrad Gozzo Trumpet
Jimmy Crawford Drums
Elmer Crumbley Trombone
Cutty Cutshall Trombone
Buff Estes Alto Saxophone
Billy Exner Drums
Nick Fatool Drums
Fletcher Henderson Piano
Barry Galbraith Guitar
Chuck Gentry Baritone Saxophone
Bernie Glow Trumpet
Doc Goldberg Bass
Ray Gonzales Violin, Marimbas
Chris Griffin Trumpet
Dan Grissom Alto Saxophone
Jerry Jerome Tenor Saxophone
Steve Jordan Guitar
Billy Kyle Piano
Steve Lipkins Trumpet
Irvin "Marky" Markowitz Trumpet
Skip Martin Alto Saxophone
Carmen Mastren Guitar
Jimmy Maxwell Trumpet
Glenn Miller Trombone, Track Performer
Nuncio "Toots" Mondello Alto Saxophone
Louis Mucci Trumpet
Johnny Napton Trumpet
Al Norris Guitar
Fred Otis Piano
Bernie Privin Trumpet
Raymond Scott Piano
Zoot Sims Tenor Saxophone
O'Neill Spencer Drums
Bruce Squires Trombone
Bob Swift Trombone
Bob Thorne Trumpet
Tom Morgan Guitar
John Van Eps Tenor Saxophone
Eddie Wade Trumpet
Paul Webster Trumpet
Sid Weiss Bass
Clarence Willard Trumpet
Ollie Wilson Trombone
Walter Yoder Bass
Snooky Young Trumpet
Alvin Davis Trumpet
Eddie Bailey Trumpet
Doc Cenardo Drums
Arnold Covarrubias Guitar
Hammond Russum Tenor Saxophone
Cornel Tanassy Piano
Robert Walters Reeds
Warren Brown Trombone
Ronnie Chase Trombone
Corky Cornelius Trumpet
Alec FILA Trumpet
Eddy Julian Drums
Clint Neagley Alto Saxophone
Pete Pumiglio Clarinet
Billy Rowland Piano
Morty Stuhlmaker Bass
Wolfe Tayne Tenor Saxophone
John Williams [drums] Drums
Charlie Green Bass
Jack Hansen Trumpet
Sol Kane Alto Saxophone
Art Ralston Baritone Saxophone
Frank Victor Guitar
Arnold Johnson Track Performer
Jack Shilkret Alto Saxophone
Murray Williams Alto Saxophone
Jorge Lopez Trumpet
Tony Gottuso Guitar
Joe Herde Alto Saxophone
Ed Scheer Tenor Saxophone
Larry Tice Alto Saxophone
Ed Wilcox Piano
Chummy MacGregor Piano
Bud Smith Trombone
Bob Price Trumpet
Irish Cullen Alto Saxophone
Fred Duro Piano
Stan Fishelman Trumpet
Bob Jenney Trombone
Noah Landberg Violin
Steve Madrick Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
Chester Pardee Reeds
Joe Petroni Guitar
Irving Prestopnick Clarinet
Joh Sedola Tenor Saxophone
Walter Shaver Bass
Lou Shoobe Bass
Manny Strand Piano
Tony Viola Alto Saxophone
Walter Wax Trumpet
Barney Zudecoff Trumpet
Jesse Ralph Trombone
Carl Swift Alto Saxophone
John Harrell Tenor Saxophone
Tweet Peterson Trumpet
Carl Biesacker Tenor Saxophone
Antonio Lopez Percussion
Billy Hobbs Alto Saxophone, Piano-Accordion
Al Donahue Track Performer
Ardell Garretson Trumpet
Artt Mendelsohn Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
Bill Corti Trombone
Frédéric Schmitt French Horn
Bob Holt Piano
Leo Moran Trombone
Paul Neil Bass
John Nelson Alto Saxophone
Dale Brown Alto Saxophone
Catalino Rolón Percussion
Ted Buckner Alto Saxophone
Bob Sprentall Trumpet
Dave Harris Tenor Saxophone
Ismael Morales Reeds
Max Nadel Reeds
Rodney Scott Trumpet
Ramon Lite Piano-Accordion
Sonny Lee Trombone
Harvey Cell Bass
Gene Leman Drums
Chuck Robinson Guitar
Harry Clark Bass
Technical Credits
Ludwig van Beethoven Composer
Will Bradley Director
Les Brown Director
Xavier Cugat Director
Benny Goodman Director
Woody Herman Director, Contributor
John Kirby Composer, Director
Jimmie Lunceford Director
Mel Powell Arranger
Claude Thornhill Arranger, Director
Charlie Shavers Arranger, Composer
Red Nichols Director
Tutti Camarata Arranger
George Hall Arranger, Director
Dolly Dawn Contributor
Frédéric Chopin Composer
Fletcher Henderson Arranger
Thomas Frost Executive Producer
Ben Homer Arranger
Skip Martin Arranger
Glenn Miller Arranger, Director
Raymond Scott Arranger, Director
Dave Torbert Arranger
Leonard Whitney Arranger
Michael Brooks Producer
Dick Sudhalter Liner Notes
Arnold Johnson Director
Benny Goodman & His Orchestra Contributor
Claude Thornhill & His Orchestra Contributor
The Glenn Miller Orchestra Contributor
Jimmie Lunceford & His Orchestra Contributor
John Kirby & His Orchestra Contributor
Les Brown & His Orchestra Contributor
Will Bradley & His Orchestra Contributor
Xavier Cugat & His Orchestra Contributor
Gail Marowitz Art Direction
Jack Ferrier Producer
Harry Coster Engineer
Cheryl Gross Illustrations
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