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Neal Hefti

Neal Hefti was an American jazz trumpeter, composer, tune writer, and arranger. He was perhaps best known for composing the theme music for the Batman television series of the 1960s, and for scoring the 1968 film The Odd Couple and the subsequent TV series of the same name. He began arranging professionally in his teens, when he wrote charts for Nat Towles. He became a prominent composer and arranger while playing trumpet for Woody Herman; while working for Herman he provided new arrangements for "Woodchopper's Ball" and "Blowin' Up a Storm," and composed "The Good Earth" and "Wild Root." After leaving Herman's band in 1946, Hefti concentrated on arranging and composing, although he occasionally led his own bands. He is especially known for his charts for Count Basie such as "Li'l Darlin'" and "Cute".

Jazz & Film: An Alternative Top 20 Soundtrack Albums

Read "Jazz & Film: An Alternative Top 20 Soundtrack Albums" reviewed by Chris May

Jazz and the movies have a shared history stretching back almost a hundred years. The relationship came into its own in the US in the mid twentieth century. Elia Kazan's 1950 movie Panic In The Streets is an early example of how film makers used jazz-based soundtracks to enhance drama and atmosphere and create ambiances of ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Vince Mendoza: Streams of Influence Flowing into a River of Sound

Read "Vince Mendoza: Streams of Influence Flowing into a River of Sound" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

Vince Mendoza is a jazz composer, arranger, and conductor of consummate originality, skill, and adaptability, so much so that he has for several decades received frequent invitations and commissions from the whole gamut of ensembles and performers like the WDR Big Band, the Metropole Orkest in the Netherlands, the Los Angeles and Berlin Philharmonic, and the ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Rick Lawn: The Evolution of Big Band Sounds in America

Read "Rick Lawn: The Evolution of Big Band Sounds in America" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

From the latter part of the Jazz Age through the Swing Era, big bands dominated the jazz scene and a large part of the entertainment industry. After World War II, their fortunes declined, but their music soared to new heights, spurred on by innovative leaders, instrumentalists, and very importantly, the composers/arrangers who worked behind the scenes ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Lisa Maxwell's Jazz Orchestra: Shiny!

Read "Shiny!" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi

Esce in questi giorni, dopo una lunga gestazione, il debutto da leader di Lisa Maxwell, talentosa compositrice e arrangiatrice nota nell'ambiente del jazz statunitense e negli studios di registrazione. Lisa ha orchestrato e diretto colonne sonore per film e serie televisive, collaborato anche come sassofonista con gruppi rock (Guns 'n' Roses, Lenny Kravitz, Carole King), jazz ...

NEWS: VIDEO / DVD

Neal Hefti at the Movies

Neal Hefti at the Movies

Like Henry Mancini, arranger-composer Neal Hefti turned to the movies for work in the 1960s and beyond. Best known in the '50s for updating the swing of Count Basie's band, Hefti wrote movie scores in the '60s that were distinctly jaunty, jovial and wistful They crystallized the young-adult mood of those years. He knew how to ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

David Hazeltine: The Time Is Now

Read "The Time Is Now" reviewed by David A. Orthmann

David Hazeltine's thirty-fourth date as a leader juxtaposes his strengths as a composer, interpreter of standard material, improviser, as well as the capacity to converse and interact with his peers. There's something magical about the ways in which the pianist employs these skills, avoiding emphasizing one at the expense of the others, and in doing so ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

The DIVA Jazz Orchestra: 25th Anniversary Project

Read "25th Anniversary Project" reviewed by Jack Bowers

To mark the DIVA Jazz Orchestra's twenty-fifth year as one of the world's leading jazz ensembles--male or female--drummer / music director Sherrie Maricle gave herself and eight members of the all-woman orchestra a homework assignment: to compose and arrange each of the ten numbers on the group's eleventh CD, the bright and exhilarating 25th Anniversary Project. ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

David Ricard Big Band: Parallels

Read "Parallels" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Whatever else the fates may decree, fortune must be smiling when one can open a big-band album with the workaday theme from “Spider-Man" and make it shine. Bassist David Ricard is fortune's beneficiary here, as are those partisans who are lucky enough to chance upon Parallels, Ricard's third and most recent treatise on big-band excellence. Whereas ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

The Flying Horse Big Band: The Bat Swings!

Read "The Bat Swings!" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Although The Bat Swings! could well be taken for a baseball analogy, the focus of this third CD by the University of Central Florida's high-powered Flying Horse Big Band is on music associated with the campy Batman TV series from the late 1960s that starred Adam West as the masked superhero and Burt Ward as his ...


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