Trumpeter Ray Anthony, a bandleader for more than half a century, led his first ensemble for the U.S. Navy during World War II, and performed a number of times on behalf of the Navy recruiting service from 1946–54, broadcasts from which the selections on this disc were taken. This is exclusively standard fare designed for dancing, some of which sounds quite dated (“Wheel of Fortune,” “Bermuda,” “Blacksmith’s Blues,” for example). Solos are entrusted almost exclusively to the leader’s emphatic trumpet (brother Leo, on baritone, makes it a twosome on “Dinah,” while tenors Wise and Usselton have nice choruses alongside Ray on “Perdido”). The band itself is as polished and alert as most dance bands of the period, and shows its mettle on several of the instrumentals including “Walkin’ My Baby Back Home” (solos by Anthony and Wise), “Deep Night” (an excellent chart featuring Sarvisi’s piano and Anthony’s muted trumpet), “I Get a Kick Out of You” and “Trumpet Boogie.” The vocalists, Marcie Miller, Tommy Mercer and the Skyliners, are no better than adequate, and sometimes even less so (especially Mercer). The uncredited announcer, by the way, is Don Wilson, who assumed that role for many years as a member of Jack Benny’s beloved radio family. Sound quality on these radio broadcasts is respectable, and the disc is easily recommended to Ray Anthony/big–band completists.
Track listing: Young Man with a Horn (theme); Lullaby of Broadway; Sentimental Journey; Wheel of Fortune; The Continental; As Time Goes By; Walkin’ My Baby Back Home; You’re Driving Me Crazy; Bermuda; Begin the Beguine; I’ll Walk Alone; They Didn’t Believe Me; Deep Night; I Hear a Rhapsody; Dinah; I Get a Kick Out of You; That Old Black Magic; Delicado; Perdido; I’ll Remember April; Blacksmith Blues; Sometimes I’m Happy; Trumpet Boogie; I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart; For Dancers Only (62:57).
Ray Anthony, leader, trumpet; Bruce Brukert, Jack Laubach, Dean Hinckle, Knobby Lee, trumpets; Keith Butterfield, Walter Shields, Ken Trimble, Dick Reynolds, trombones; Jim Schneider, Earl Bergman, Bill Usselton, Buddy Wise, Leo Anthony, saxes; Fred Sarvise, piano; Vince Terri, guitar; Billy Cronk, bass; Archie Freeman, drums; Marcie Miller, Tommy Mercer, The Skyliners, The Anthony Choir, vocals.
Contact: Montpellier Records, 7, The Courtyard, Montpellier Street, Cheltenham, Glos., UK GL50 1SR.