FLETCHER HENDERSON

Big Band / Swing • United States
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Fletcher Henderson led the most commercially successful of the African-American Jazz bands of the 1920s. The smooth sound of his orchestra gave birth to the Swing style of the next decade. Henderson was from a middle class family and held a degree in chemistry from Atlanta University. He moved to New York in 1920 intending to do post-graduate work there while working as a chemist, but he found that jobs were closed to him because of his race. He instead found work demonstrating sheet music for W.C. Handy's music publishing company. He left that company to become a manager at the Black Swan Recording Company, and organized a band to support Blues singer Ethel Waters. In 1922, Fletcher led a band at the Club Alabam, which later moved to the Roseland Ballroom (Broadway at 50th St.) where they stayed for the next ten years. Coleman Hawkins played saxophone in the read more...
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Tidal Wave by Fletcher Henderson (1994-09-27)Tidal Wave by Fletcher Henderson (1994-09-27)
Import Music Services
$32.87
$13.14 (used)
Slumming on Park Avenue: Recordings By the Greatest Musicians of the Big Band Era 1929 - 1947Slumming on Park Avenue: Recordings By the Greatest Musicians of the Big Band Era 1929 - 1947
Remastered
History 1934
$23.96
$2.07 (used)
Fletcher Henderson Story: A Study In FrustrationFletcher Henderson Story: A Study In Frustration
Extra tracks
Poll Winners 2018
$12.61
$12.79 (used)
Ken Burns Jazz-Fletcher HendersonKen Burns Jazz-Fletcher Henderson
Sony Legacy 2000
$11.98
$2.84 (used)
Classic TracksClassic Tracks
Bmg 1998
$3.39
$6.00 (used)
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FLETCHER HENDERSON Discography

FLETCHER HENDERSON albums / top albums

FLETCHER HENDERSON Hot Jazz Classics album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Hot Jazz Classics
Big Band 1940
FLETCHER HENDERSON The Big Reunion (aka Tribute To Fletcher Henderson) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Big Reunion (aka Tribute To Fletcher Henderson)
Big Band 1957
FLETCHER HENDERSON The Fletcher Henderson All Stars Big Reunion album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Fletcher Henderson All Stars Big Reunion
Big Band 1957
FLETCHER HENDERSON First Impressions (1924-1931) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
First Impressions (1924-1931)
Big Band 1958
FLETCHER HENDERSON Collection Jazz Classics Vol. 25 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Collection Jazz Classics Vol. 25
Big Band 1961
FLETCHER HENDERSON The Immortal Fletcher Henderson album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Immortal Fletcher Henderson
Big Band 1967
FLETCHER HENDERSON Fletcher Henderson And His Orchestra : Swing's the Thing Volume 2 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fletcher Henderson And His Orchestra : Swing's the Thing Volume 2
Big Band 1968
FLETCHER HENDERSON 1927-8 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
1927-8
Big Band 1968
FLETCHER HENDERSON Fletcher Henderson And The Dixie Stompers 1925-1926 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fletcher Henderson And The Dixie Stompers 1925-1926
Big Band 1970
FLETCHER HENDERSON Developing An American Orchestra 1923-1938 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Developing An American Orchestra 1923-1938
Big Band 1977
FLETCHER HENDERSON The Crown King of Swing album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Crown King of Swing
Swing 1985
FLETCHER HENDERSON Wild Party! album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Wild Party!
Big Band 1985
FLETCHER HENDERSON Hocus Pocus album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Hocus Pocus
Big Band 1989
FLETCHER HENDERSON The Harmony & Vocalion Sessions album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Harmony & Vocalion Sessions
Big Band 2000
FLETCHER HENDERSON The Harmony & Vocalion Sessions Volume 2 1927-1928 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Harmony & Vocalion Sessions Volume 2 1927-1928
Big Band 2001

FLETCHER HENDERSON EPs & splits

FLETCHER HENDERSON Jazz Gems album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Jazz Gems
Big Band 1956
FLETCHER HENDERSON Fletcher Henderson and His Band album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fletcher Henderson and His Band
Big Band 1965
FLETCHER HENDERSON Fletcher Henderson's Connies Inn Orchestra album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fletcher Henderson's Connies Inn Orchestra
Big Band 1966
FLETCHER HENDERSON Fletcher Henderson album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fletcher Henderson
Big Band 1969

FLETCHER HENDERSON live albums

FLETCHER HENDERSON Fletcher Henderson's Sextet (1950) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fletcher Henderson's Sextet (1950)
Swing 1951
FLETCHER HENDERSON 'Live' At The Grand Terrace, Chicago, 1938 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
'Live' At The Grand Terrace, Chicago, 1938
Big Band 1994

FLETCHER HENDERSON demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

FLETCHER HENDERSON re-issues & compilations

FLETCHER HENDERSON Fletcher Henderson, Louis Armstrong, Coleman Hawkins, Tommy Ladnier ‎: The Birth Of Big Band Jazz album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fletcher Henderson, Louis Armstrong, Coleman Hawkins, Tommy Ladnier ‎: The Birth Of Big Band Jazz
Big Band 1954
FLETCHER HENDERSON And His Connie's Inn Orchestra album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
And His Connie's Inn Orchestra
Big Band 1955
FLETCHER HENDERSON A Study in Frustration album cover 4.00 | 2 ratings
A Study in Frustration
Big Band 1961
FLETCHER HENDERSON Fletcher Henderson 1934 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fletcher Henderson 1934
Big Band 1963
FLETCHER HENDERSON First Impressions Volume 1 (1924-1931) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
First Impressions Volume 1 (1924-1931)
Big Band 1967
FLETCHER HENDERSON Fletcher Henderson Orchestra 1923 - 1927 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fletcher Henderson Orchestra 1923 - 1927
Big Band 1972
FLETCHER HENDERSON Pierre Cardin Présente: Fletcher Henderson Orchestra 1923-1927 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Pierre Cardin Présente: Fletcher Henderson Orchestra 1923-1927
Big Band 1973
FLETCHER HENDERSON Fletcher Henderson's Orchestra album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fletcher Henderson's Orchestra
Big Band 1973
FLETCHER HENDERSON 1924-1926 - New York Columbia Sessions album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
1924-1926 - New York Columbia Sessions
Big Band 1976
FLETCHER HENDERSON New York - December 1950 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
New York - December 1950
Big Band 1979
FLETCHER HENDERSON I Grandi Del Jazz #06 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
I Grandi Del Jazz #06
Big Band 1981
FLETCHER HENDERSON Fletcher Henderson And His Orchestra - 1931 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fletcher Henderson And His Orchestra - 1931
Big Band 1990
FLETCHER HENDERSON 1937–1938 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
1937–1938
Big Band 1990
FLETCHER HENDERSON 1927 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
1927
Big Band 1991
FLETCHER HENDERSON Somebody Loves Me album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Somebody Loves Me
Big Band 1991
FLETCHER HENDERSON Yeah Man album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Yeah Man
Big Band 1994
FLETCHER HENDERSON 1932-1934 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
1932-1934
Big Band 1997
FLETCHER HENDERSON Ken Burns Jazz album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Ken Burns Jazz
Big Band 2000
FLETCHER HENDERSON Slumming on Park Avenue album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Slumming on Park Avenue
Big Band 2001
FLETCHER HENDERSON Blue Rhythm album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Blue Rhythm
Big Band 2003
FLETCHER HENDERSON Quadromania: Wrappin' It Up album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Quadromania: Wrappin' It Up
Big Band 2005

FLETCHER HENDERSON singles (0)

FLETCHER HENDERSON movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

FLETCHER HENDERSON Reviews

FLETCHER HENDERSON Quadromania: Wrappin' It Up

Boxset / Compilation · 2005 · Big Band
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js
These Quadromania CD compilations are extremely inexpensive, which makes them suspect at first, but this four CD collection of Fletcher Henderson tracks called “Wrappin It Up” is surprisingly good, especially when you consider the bottom barrel price. Fletcher Henderson is probably the most under appreciated figure in popular jazz history. A contemporary and early band mate of Louie Armstrong, and a precedent for Ellington’s orchestra, Henderson’s importance in the development of jazz is topped only by Armstrong, Ellington and Charlie Parker. If Henderson remains a mystery to you, then this compilation will make for an excellent introduction.

Jazz music was at a peak in the late 20s and early 30s, when most of these tracks were recorded. The music had become far more sophisticated and arranged after leaving New Orleans for New York, but at the same time, this period of jazz was often more experimental and devilishly intense than much of the swing music that followed in the late 30s. Listening to these tracks reveals complex and difficult arrangements topped with crazy hot solos, all played with mind boggling ease and confidence by artists who often went on to more fame with the Ellington Orchestra and others. Coleman Hawkins is all over this collection, but you will also hear the early careers of Russell Proscope, Rex Stewart, Tommy Ladner, Buster Bailey, Don Redmond and many other greats. The recorded sound and flow from track to track is quite good. Some CD collections of older music feature jarring differences between tracks, fortunately there is none of that on “Wrappin It Up”.

Sometimes modern (especially Western) ears have a hard time hearing details in music like this. The big sound of rock and RnB that originated in the 70s becomes a barrier to understanding music from other time periods and cultures where ‘production’ is non-existent. Whether its Indonesian Gamelan, Bach harpsichord inventions, early blues or 20s jazz, the difference from post 70s music is remarkable, and sometimes preferred by some. The other barrier to understanding 20s jazz is its tonality. This was a time when the brightness of major scales was the dominate sound. Since the 50s, the minor blues scale has come to dominate Western music including hard bop, modern blues, hard rock, metal, modern RnB and hip-hop. Some may interpret the bright sound of late 20s jazz as ‘happy’, but a giddy cocaine fueled exuberance would probably be a more fitting description. This was, after all, music for gangsters and illegal partiers, and it was outlawed in many parts of the US.

The big difference in this music compared to jazz today is in the ensemble work. The guys in Henderson’s band traveled together and played long strings of one night gigs while playing the same tunes night after night. The way this band can move together while playing high speed complex syncopated arrangements is something you will not hear today because today’s musician has to play in four or five different ensembles just to keep busy and pay the bills. Unfortunately, the sort of commitment needed to play in an ensemble like this is not usually available anymore.

FLETCHER HENDERSON A Study in Frustration

Boxset / Compilation · 1961 · Big Band
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js
“A Study in Frustration” is an oddly titled four LP collection of the music of Fletcher Henderson put out by Columbia in 1961. It was also re-issued on CD in the 90s. Its an odd title because Henderson is one of the most important and successful figures in jazz. Although his name may not be as well-known as Duke Ellington, Louie Armstrong and Charlie Parker, he probably ranks only behind that big three when it comes to his importance in innovations that furthered the development of jazz. The excellent booklet that accompanies this box set spends some time speculating that Henderson could have been more successful with better marketing, hence the rather harsh and undeserved title for this production.

Fletcher Henderson is the big band leader who has been given the most credit for taking jazz from its rough hewn and mostly group improvised New Orleans beginnings, to being a music performed by a big band reading complex written arrangements that featured hot soloists such as Louie Armstrong and Coleman Hawkins. This entire collection spans from 1924 to 1937, but its that period from the 20s to the early 30s that makes up most of this set, and that's the period with the most interesting music as well. Fletcher Henderson was the master of 1920s jazz (also called ‘Classic Jazz‘), a style of jazz that exists in a world all its own, markedly different from the New Orleans jazz that preceded it, and the swing jazz that will follow in the mid-30s. 1920s jazz has a rapid flow in which ideas appear and are quickly discarded, sometimes in almost comical flippancy. The hectic herky-jerky rhythms are very urban in nature and reflect the constant bustle of city life, which was a new environment to many in the US at this time. Many a 1920s jazz arranger, such as the great Don Redman who worked for Henderson in the late 20s, was proud of their ability to experiment in their arrangements, often borrowing the latest harmonic developments coming from the leading concert hall composers of the time. Finally, this was a music for hipsters and wannabe gangsters, modernistic in its appeal, there was nothing sentimental about this music. With its comprehensive 64 tracks, “A Study in Frustration” makes for an excellent way to explore this very vibrant and fast moving period in jazz history.

If this review stopped here you would be correct to think that this is an easy 5 star collection, but there are some problems. At this point I have to credit a certain Steve Espinola who has taken the time to uncover editing problems in this collection. Apparently there are two main mastering sources for these old Henderson tunes. One source of masters is by an engineer for Columbia who decided to edit out any ticks by actually removing that part of the tape, a horrible idea that makes the music spasmodically lurch forward in some places. Some of these edits are more noticeable than others, and several tunes may pass before you notice, but when you do hear it, it sounds like the whole band just had a collective hiccup. This same engineer also tried to remove surface noise with severe eq techniques as well. These, of course, are the masters that were used for “Frustration”, as well as some other Henderson collections. Apparently there are some better masters by a John R. T. Davies, that are used in other collections (such as the Timeless label).

To sum all this up, despite the problems, this is an incredible collection and if you find it on vinyl for a very good price (as I did) then you have a good deal. But, if you are looking at the CD collection, because of the bad mastering, it seems there are probably better CD collections to be had.

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