The music of the Big Bands helped to define an era in music. From the mid-1930s throughout the 1940s swing was the thing. The music helped to create a diversion from the painful realities of the Great Depression and a world at war.
It was compelling music with catchy arrangements to dance and dream to at ballrooms all across America. The music was both sweet and hot. Each band had a distinct sound and personality that was immediately recognizable. It was their calling card. Whenever the music was played on records in jukeboxes or were broadcast live on radio from far distant ballrooms, listeners could immediately identify what band was playing. Young people followed bands so closely they knew so well the personnel of their favorite bands in much the same way as baseball fans knew the starting line-up and batting averages of players on their favorite team. Each orchestra's sound and personality was certainly brought about by the instrumentalists and singers and by the arrangers who wrote the scores, but at the heart of each of the bands was its bandleader.
Author Stephen Fratallone provides readers with glimpses into the heart and soul of some of the most popular bandleaders from the Big Band Era in his latest book for BearManor Media, Connections in Swing, Volume One: The Bandleaders. As an outcome of his love for the music of the Big Bands, he developed relationships with bandleaders throughout his writing career, and shared the lives of these great musicians in this book. In this compilation of the bandleaders interviewed for Jazz Connection Magazine, Fratallone gives readers an enjoyable and informative look - a "connection in swing" - into the lives of some of the musical greats that helped create and develop one of the greatest genres in American music.