From ‘Song of India’ to ‘Little Pony’, we have mixed 20 ‘Jazz‘ tunes written or co-written by ‘Neal Hefti‘. It has Alan Hawkshaw, Count Basie, Woody Herman, Neal Hefti & His Orchestra and many more.
New York Times: Over the years, Mr. Hefti, first known as a jazz trumpeter in the 1940s and 1950s, was much admired and much in demand as an arranger, conductor and occasional record producer; he worked with Frank Sinatra, Doris Day, Mel TormÃ© and Tony Bennett, among others. He also led his own bands, and he was active as a player until 1960.
Washington Post : A modestly talented trumpeter, he also led groups with his wife, singer Frances Wayne, but gained his greatest prominence as a composer and arranger for Basie and Sinatra in the 1950s and 1960s.
Los Angeles Times : Hefti said it took him “the better part of a month” to come up with the theme (of Batman). “I was almost going to call them and say, I can’t do it,” he said. “But I never walk out on projects, so I sort of forced myself to finish.”
International Herald Tribune : His early travels with jazz bands took him to New York, where he was mesmerized by the bebop playing of Dizzy Gillespie, and joined the Herman band â€” known as First Herd â€” in 1944. He was influential in moving that band from its swing roots in the direction of bebop.
Answers.com : For Basie, he wrote “Little Pony,” “Cute,” “Li’l Darling,” “Whirlybird,” and many other swinging songs, often utilizing Frank Wess’ flute in inventive fashion.
The Telegraph : Hefti’s output over the two post-war decades was quite remarkable, both in productivity and in its consistently high quality. In addition to 60 scores for Basie, he produced string accompaniments for both Charlie Parker and Clifford Brown; albums with Coleman Hawkins, June Christy, Georgie Auld; and, most notably, Harry James, plus numerous recordings under his own name. He scored a minor hit in 1951 with a catchy tune entitled Coral Reef and made a superb album, Songs For My Man, with his wife in 1956
The Independent : The album The Atomic Mr Basie (1957), for which Hefti wrote all the music, was an embarrassment for him and Count Basie, both in its title and the cover picture, but it made a fortune for them and for the record company and remains one of the most memorable big band albums of all time.
Gamepost : You probably never knew his name, but you know some of his work. Hell, I’m a huge Batman fan but never knew his name either lol. Neal Hefti passed away this past Saturday at the age of 85. Whether you love or hate the tv series, you can’t deny the impact of the iconic theme song. If you’d like to honor him in a small way, why not watch the intro? lol
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