Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for 1,000 backers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

Billy May

The last of the great arrangers who wrote regularly for Frank Sinatra, Billy May had several varied careers in and out of jazz. His first notable gig was as an arranger/trumpeter with Charlie Barnet (1938-1940), for whom he wrote the wah-wah-ing hit arrangement of Ray Noble's “Cherokee.”

Later, he worked in the same capacities for Glenn Miller (1940-1942) and Les Brown (1942) before settling into staff jobs, first at NBC studios, then at Capitol Records, where he led his own studio big band from 1951 to 1954. His arrangements for Sinatra, beginning with Come Fly With Me (1957) and ending with Trilogy (1979), are often in a walloping, brassy, even taunting swing mode, generating some of the singer's most swaggering vocals.

Read more

Discography

Videos

Similar

Benny Goodman Benny Goodman
clarinet
Artie Shaw Artie Shaw
clarinet
Woody Herman Woody Herman
band/orchestra
Ray Anthony Ray Anthony
trumpet
Lalo Schifrin Lalo Schifrin
band/orchestra
Les Brown Les Brown
composer/conductor
Nelson Riddle Nelson Riddle
arranger

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!