Marshal Royal was at the core of the Count Basie Orchestra for 20 years during its resurgence in the 1950s and 1960s. Before that he was a pioneer of jazz on the West Coast of the US, playing with many bands in and around Los Angeles. His memoirs provide a document of the history of jazz on the West Coast and the development of big band jazz. Royal gives a vivid account of his work in Les Hite's band at Sebastian's New Cotton Club, where he worked with many stars including Louis Armstrong and Fats Waller. He became a founder member and "straw boss" of Lionel Hampton's Orchestra after a wartime career in US Navy bands. Leaving Hampton, he made countless recordings as a freelance before joining Basie, where he was responsible for rehearsing the Orchestra, and three chapters offer an insider's view of the latter-day Basie band. After leaving Basie, as well as continuing his prolific recording career Royal became internationally famous as a touring soloist. The book also contains an account of Royal's trumpeter brother Ernie, who starred in the bands of Woody Herman and Stan Kenton.
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Number of pages: 180
Weight: 320 g
Dimensions: 229 x 161 x 6 mm
Edition: New edition
"Marshal reveals a prodigious memory for names, places, incidents, and engagaements with a fund of anecdotes which fill this book."
-Eddie Cook, Jazz Journal International
"Concentrated and never-less-than interesting."
-Raymond Horricks, Crescendo & Jazz Music
"Enjoyable reading...This is the closest you can get to history without actually living it."
-Robert Tate, Jazz Now