Conducts and Rehearses a Big Band – 1978

Thad Jones

The masterful arranger-composer rehearses an orchestra

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Thad Jones (1923-86) was a distinctive and skilled trumpet and cornet soloist, an important arranger-composer, and a bandleader who really knew how to conduct and lead a group.

In this intriguing film, Thad Jones is seen in Europe on Feb. 27, 1978 conducting the Danish Radio Big Band during a rehearsal.

He uses clear signals, wit, and a personality that balances modesty and quiet authority to get the musicians to enjoy going over their parts.

The very end of the clip is a real treat for Dexter Gordon shows up and the band immediately launches into a version of Happy Birthday; he had just turned 55.

-Scott Yanow


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