A three part radio series about band-leader, Fletcher Henderson

Concert: Fletcher Henderson

Concert: Fletcher Henderson

I really enjoyed listening to this wonderful radio show on Resonance FM and hope you will too.

From Hot Club Du Monde by Resonance FM

A Baedeker tour of international musical curiosities from the 78rpm era with Oliver Carter-Wakefield. A three part series exploring the life and work of pioneering band-leader and arranger Fletcher Henderson who once said of his orchestra, “When I can get them all on the stand I’ve got the baddest ass band in town.”


Part 1 – 10 March 2016

Despite employing some of the most talented jazz musicians of his generation the former chemistry student never succeeded in gaining the fame and recognition awarded to many of his white contemporaries, leading one jazz writer to dub his career as “a study in frustration”.

Featuring music from Louis Armstrong, Coleman Hawkins, Benny Carter and Cootie Williams.

Part 2 – 17 March 2016

Oliver Carter-Wakefield continues his investigation into the life and recordings of pioneering band-leader and arranger Fletcher Henderson.

This episode looks at some of Henderson’s late 1920’s recordings and examining how the musical evolution of key members of his orchestra such as Don Redman and Coleman Hawkins helped define the sound of the swing era years before marketing executives crowned Benny Goodman “the King of Swing”.

Part 3 – 24 March 2016

Oliver Carter-Wakefield concludes his three part series looking at the life and work of pioneering band-leader and arranger Fletcher Henderson.

The show examines how Henderson’s own arranging developed after the departure of Don Redman in 1927. Henderson’s career during the early 1930s saw him recover from a series of musical setbacks to lead one the best bands of his career.

It was also a period which saw him begin his epoch-defining and fruitful musical collaboration with clarinettist and band-leader Benny Goodman. Utilising Henderson’s arrangements Goodman’s orchestra took the nation by storm and fundamentally changed the face of American popular music.

Featuring a number of atmospheric arrangements by Henderson, his brother Horace and territory band-leader Nate Leslie.

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