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Tuesday, September 6, 2022

New Horizons - Les Brown



New Worlds
Les Brown
And The Super Sounds Of Renown
With The Jack Halloran Singers
Producer: Sonny Burke
Recording Engineer: Lenny Roberts
Recorded in Hollywood, California 
Cover Illustration by Bob Krogle thru Art Expo
Art Direction: Ken Kim
Daybreak Stereo Records DR2007

From the  back cover: A Pisces blessed with enormous dedication and drive, Les Brown grew up in Reinerton, Pa., where his father worked as a baker who moonlighted as a music teacher and band conductor. Les learned music by playing his dad's little soprano sax.

Everyone by now knows of young Les''s achievements while he was attending Duke University in the 1930's. His Duke Blue Devils dance orchestra became so regionally prominent in America's South that they were recorded by mighty RCA for its Bluebird Table. But few are aware that even before his Duke triumps, Les attended the Conservatory of Music in Ithaca, N.Y., where he studied and perfected the fundamentals leading to his enviable arranging and conducting skills.

Eventually, because they were college kids who had prepared for vocations in fields unrelated to music, the Devils disbanded. Les then made New York City his headquarters and prospered, cleffing arrangements for the "big name" bands of Larry Clinton, Isham Jones and others.

In 1938, Les tried again as a leader. It was the era of Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw, Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey, Jimmie Lunceford, Count Basie and Duke Ellington. Nothing came easy for the fledgling Brown band. Vital radio broadcasts and lucrative gigs in the nation's theaters, ballrooms and hotels were, for a couple of distressing, lean years, hard to come by. But eventually Brown's musicianship paid off.

His records on Decca and Columiba began to move up to the charts. His blonde vocalist, Doris Day, a frustrated dancer, helped the band attract attention and national popularity. The World War II period brought a smash in "Sentimental Journey" which, oddly, was contributed by one of Brown's sidemen, Ben Homer.

It was '47 that Les began his association with Bob Hope. They still work together nearly a quarter of a century later. Brown and his band have toured the world many times with the ski-nosed comic, repeatedly playing for U.S. servicemen in Korea and, more recently, Vietnam. The "Band of Renown" was long featured on Steve Allen's NBC and ABC television series, and since 1965 Les has worked as musical director of Dean Martin's program on NBC-TV. – Noted by Pepper Prothro

From Billboard - February 5, 1972: Top mood package is this debut by bandleader Les Brown on the Daybreak (RCA) label. Effectively the Jack Halloran Singers and intertwined between lush strings, arrangements of the them from "Kotch," as well as recent pop hits such as "I Feel The Earth Move," "Didn't We," "Something" and "Michelle." Another standout is the swinging big band reading of "Superstar."

Life Is What You Make It
I Feel The Earth Move
All His Children 
Hello Forever
Didn't We
This Way, Mary
Love Is Good For Everyone

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