Bill Holman on starting his own big band
NOW, A JAZZ MOMENT..
FROM THE 1950S TO THE MID 70S, NEA JAZZ MASTER BILL HOLMAN WROTE AND ARRANGED SCORES OF MUSIC FOR MANY OF THE GREAT BIG BANDS, INCLUDING THOSE OF CHARLIE BARNETT, STAN KENTON, BUDDY RICH, AND WOODY HERMAN. BUT HE GREW FRUSTRATED, OFTEN BEING ON THE SIDELINES, NOT HAVING A CHANCE TO WORK DIRECTLY WITH EACH BAND ON HIS PIECES.
Bill Holman: I wasn't getting to hear my music until I heard "their" version of it. So a guy in town was talking with one of the co-owners of Dante's, which was the ranking Los Angeles jazz club at the time. Says, if Bill Holman started a band, could you offer him, like, Sunday nights here at the club? All of a sudden I had a band.
IN 1975, THE BILL HOLMAN BAND WAS BORN. BUT IT TOOK SOME TIME BEFORE ITS LEADER COULD BE CALLED FEARLESS.
Due to my screwed up personality, I was scared to death of being in front of a group of people. (laughs) One group being my band, the other group being the audience, you know. So a gig to me was like terror time!
THIS JAZZ MOMENT WAS CREATED BY THE NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE ARTS.