Live 1964

Woody Herman Orchestra

One of Woody Herman’s finest bands stretches out for an hour

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While Woody Herman may be best known for leading his First Herd (1944-46) and Second Herd (1947-49), his band of the 1960s ranks with his very best.

Herman’s orchestra in 1964 featured such notables as high note trumpeter Bill Chase, the virtuosic trombonist Phil Wilson, tenor-saxophonist Sal Nistico (who could play at very fast tempos while perfectly articulating every note), pianist-arranger Nat Pierce and drummer Jake Hanna.

That big band is featured on a dozen songs during this live performance from England, with the highlights including Phil Wilson’s remarkable playing on “Lonesome Old Town,” “Sister Sadie,” “Better Git In In Your Soul,” “Hallelujah Time,” “Four Brothers” and a ridiculously uptempo version of “Caledonia” that makes one sympathize with the bassist!

With Woody Herman adding his clarinet and alto to the music, this exciting and well-rounded concert is quite memorable.

– Scott Yanow


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