Daily Archives: April 24, 2021

GLENN MILLER’S “UPTOWN HALL GANG” on the RADIO: MEL POWELL, PEANUTS HUCKO, BERNIE PRVIN, DINAH SHORE, NAT PECK, LARRY HALL, CARMEN MASTREN, TRIGGER ALPERT, RAY McKINLEY (England, 1944)

The UPTOWN HALL GANG was a small group out of the overseas Glenn Miller orchestra.  They made a dozen or so studio recordings in 1945, plus four famous sides with Django Reinhardt as a star, but the material here comes from radio broadcasts, and I must thank the deep Miller collectors Tommy Burns and David Weiner for the music, which I have saved since 1984.

The collective personnel is Mel Powell, piano and arrangements; Bernie Privin, trumpet; Nat Peck, Larry Hall, trombone; Peanuts Hucko, clarinet and tenor saxophone; Addison Collins, French horn, Carmen Mastren, guitar; Trigger Alpert or Joe Shulman, string bass; Ray McKinley, drums.  Dinah Shore and Johnny Desmond sang.  The music occupies a fascinating middle-ground between Fifty-Second Street jam sessions and early harmonic experimentations of bebop, with touches of boogie-woogie and echoes of the Goodman small groups.

Here is an hour-long anthology of broadcast performances (with some announcements) taken off the radio in England from mid-1944 to he next year.  The songs are BLOW TOP / WHERE OR WHEN / HOW HIGH THE MOON / NIGHT AND DAY (Dinah Shore) / ROSETTA / LADY BE GOOD / YOU GO TO MY HEAD (Privin) / EMALINE / AS LONG AS I LIVE (Hucko) / THE SHEIK OF ARABY / SHANDY / PLEASE DON’T TALK ABOUT ME WHEN I’M GONE (Privin) / I MUST HAVE THAT MAN (Hucko-Powell-McKinley) / TRIPLE X / SHOEMAKER’S APRON (trio) / PLAIN AND FANCY BLUES / JERRY’S AACHEN BACK / AFTER YOU’VE GONE / PARACHUTE JUMP / HALLELUJAH! (Powell feature with the orchestra) / I WANT TO BE HAPPY (same) //

 

 

Delightful music and not well-known: thanks to the musicians heard here, to Tommy and Dave and the Miller collectors worldwide.

May your happiness increase!

Bunk Johnson FB