Ted Heath Big Band — 1959 — Past Daily Downbeat

Ted Heath — seal of approval from none other than Count Basie.

http://pastdaily.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Ted-Heath-and-His-Big-Band-March-2-1959.mp3

. . .or click on the link here for Audio Player — NBC International Bandstand — Ted Heath — March 2, 1959 — Gordon Skene Sound Collection

A slight stretch this week, but not all that much when you think about it. This week it’s British Bandleader Ted Heath in a session recorded by the BBC and broadcast on NBC Radio’s International Bandstand series in March of 1959.

By this time the Big Band era was pretty much over. The bands and band leaders still standing were doing all sorts of things in order to stay alive. Although a dedicated Jazz musician, Ted Heath’s recorded output ran the gamut which no doubt ran afoul of Jazz purists. But an authority no less than Count Basie once pronounced Ted Heath to be one of his favorite band leaders and it was further evidenced by numerous guest appearances by American Jazz figures throughout the 1950s. Heath’s legacy was evenly split between those people who went for the nostalgia factor to those who likened Ted Heath’s Band to some of the more forward thinking U.S. ensembles of the time (i.e. Stan Kenton).

And this episode of International Bandstand illustrates that point — going from standards such as Night and Day to small-group endeavors like Just You, Just Me to a big band rendition of a then-current Pop tune; Tequila — like the atmosphere of 50s music, it was all over the place.

But above all — Ted Heath was a well-respected Musician on both sides of the Atlantic and was considered, in the long-run, to be one of the best post-war big bands on the scene at the time.

And it ultimately begs the opportunity to take what you like and leave the rest and stay available to the possibilities.

Keep the mind and ears open and dive in.

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Originally published at pastdaily.com on November 30, 2014.

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