Big Bands

George Roberts is known in the jazz world for his recording of “Stella By Starlight” with the Stan Kenton Orchestra, which featured George on bass trombone. He is known among music instrument makers as Mr. Bass Trombone, who helped make a market for the instrument beginning in the late 1940s....
Del Roper performed the xylophone for several society big bands, playing on radio with Xavier Cugat in the early 1930s. Del was later a powerful force in studio orchestras and developed a double decker xylophone, which he played on several variety TV programs in the 1950s. The instrument, named the...
Howard Rumsey may have played the first electric bass to be recorded on a jazz recording.  While performing with Stan Kenton’s first orchestra in the early fall of 1941, Howard was asked by the bandleader to experiment with a new electric bass.  The instrument had no name on it and Howard was never...
Jim Rupp has had a passion for drumming as far back as he can remember. As a percussionist for several traveling groups in the 1970s such as those led by Maynard Ferguson and Woody Herman, Jim recognized the need for a pro drum shop in which the musician customers are addressed on their level. He...
This audio only interview was conducted for a radio program by Dan Del Fiorentino and donated to the NAMM Oral History program: Harry Sargent was a jazz drummer based out of Memphis, Tennessee. His father, Kenny Sargent (1906-1969), was a famous singer during the Big Band Era. Kenny scored several...
This audio only interview was conducted for a radio program by Dan Del Fiorentino and donated to the NAMM Oral History program: Raymond Scott was a noted bandleader and songwriter during the Big Band Era who achieved fame for supplying music to countless Warner Brother cartoons. Raymond was also an...
Denny Seiwell went along on gigs with his father who was the drummer for the Tommy Dorsey band during the great Swing Era.  Denny recalled sitting on the floor and watching his father play.  As a young child, Denny took up the drums and loved every minute.  During school he played in marching bands...
Jack Shallat was a professional violin player who landed several gigs with traveling bands in the 1930s and 40s.  During that time he met Buddy Rogers and both men opened separate music stores in and around Cincinnati in the early 1950s.  In 1967 they decided to merge their businesses and work...
Artie Shapiro played the double bass during the golden era of the big bands. His approach to the bass was steeped in the tradition of his classical background. Studio orchestras soon hired him, where he worked extensively for live radio programs. Artie gained a fine reputation for sight-reading,...
This audio only interview was conducted for a radio program by Dan Del Fiorentino and donated to the NAMM Oral History program: Arvell Shaw was the swift handed bass player who set the groove for such jazz greats as Teddy Wilson and Louis Armstrong. Arvell worked with Louis several times throughout...

Pages