Weekend Extra: Woody Herman&Apos;S Second Herd

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Browsing YouTube, I came across what must be among the rarest pieces of jazz film, a sequence of Woody Herman's Second Herd, the celebrated Four Brothers band. We hear Herman's vocal and a bit of Stan Getz's tenor saxophone on “Caldonia," then most of “Northwest Passage," both pieces holdovers from the First Herd destined to be staples in the Herman book for the rest of his life. Herman, Getz and Shorty Rogers play the trio section of “Northwest Passage," then there's a succession of four-bar solos by a guitarist, Getz, Al Cohn, Zoot Sims, Serge Chaloff, a trombonist and Herman.

The guitarist looks like Jimmy Raney, who was with the band from January to September of 1948. My guess is that the trombone soloist is Ollie Wilson. The alto saxophonist, who does not solo, is Sam Marowitz. Don Lamond is on drums. The pianist is most likely Fred Otis. I hope that knowledgable Rifftides readers can identify the bassist and confirm the identity of the pianist and the trombonist. Here's one of the greatest of all big bands:

Did I mention that it ends without ending? We take what we can get.

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This story appears courtesy of Rifftides by Doug Ramsey.
Copyright © 2015. All rights reserved.

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