Gerald Wilson Orchestra

A classic big band arrangement of “Milestones”

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Gerald Wilson (1918-2014) was one of the top jazz arrangers, starting when he worked with Jimmie Lunceford in the early 1940s and really blossoming on his Pacific Jazz recordings of the 1960s.

Wilson led a big band in the Los Angeles area for over 50 years, and one of his most popular charts was his transformation of “Milestones” into a big band flagwaver.

This film clip (which starts out with a brief “Blues For Yna Yna”) is taken from the 1962 television series Frankly Jazz (hosted by radio disc jockey Frank Evans) and features one of Wilson’s last trumpet solos (he would soon give up the horn to concentrate fulltime on arranging), altoist Buddy Collette, trombonist Lou Blackburn, a hot spot for tenor-saxophonist Teddy Edwards, and pianist Jack Wilson.

-Scott Yanow



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