Al Hirt Our Man in New Orleans


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Paul Cacia was Al Hirt's lead trumpet player and contracted the brass section for what Al Hirt called his dream band, formed in the fall of 1979.

At the time of receiving the phone call to join Al Hirt, Paul Cacia was first trumpet for the Ray Anthony Orchestra, he immediately gave notice. The Al Hirt Big Band was based out of Al's New Orleans Bourbon street nightclub, leaving for road tours, on and off, concert dates and a television show. The arrangements were by Billy May, Sammy Nestico and Mike Barone, It was a young fiery band. He was one of the first ones hired and the first one to give notice after 6 months on the road, his production company demands back in Burbank, studio work, plus the birth of his first child called him home, the road years were now behind him and his solo career ahead of him.

“'Jumbo' was truly a trumpet phenomenon, a one man trumpet section. He did things with a trumpet that just weren't on the horn, and it was my great privilege to say that I was his 1st trumpet player and his friend. I helped him form his dream band and we had a great time making great music together with some truly great musicians."

“The late great Al Hirt will always have a place in trumpet history as one of the truly great trumpet masters who could play circles around just about anyone!"

The Al Hirt Big Band played 6 nights a week at Al's New Orleans Bourbon Street nightclub. Our Man in New Orleans takes Hirt's small Dixieland ensemble and punches it up with a big band comprised entirely of brass. The arrangements are short, without a lot of room for the group to stretch out. Still, they manage to play some real Dixieland and the arrangements are quite effective. There's no way to do justice to Al Hirt's sound. It's bold and open, with astonishing technical finesse.

Bass--Lowell Miller
Clarinet--Pee Wee Spitelera
Conductor, Arranged By--Marty Paich
Drums--Frank Hudec
Piano--Ronnie Dupont
Trombone--Jerry Hirt
Trumpet--Al Hirt

Producer: Steve Sholes. Engineer: Al Schmitt. Recorded at RCA Victor's Music Center of the World, Hollywood, California on September 4 & 5, 1962.

Clarinet Marmalade 2:19
Ol' Man River 3:02
New Orleans 3:12
Panama 2:14
The Birth Of The Blues 3:14
Ja-Da 2:39
Wolverine Blues 2:28
Oh Dem Golden Slippers 2:24
When The Saints Go Marching In 1:55
When It's Sleepy Time Down South 3:58
Muskrat Ramble 2:40
Dear Old Southland 2:55

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