Book — xxv, 529 p.,  p. of plates : ill. ; 25 cm.
Billy May was a self taught musician and arranger who received his first big break playing with the Red Skelton Show under Ozzie Nelson. Soon after he was fortunate to play with the orchestra and write arrangements for John Scott Trotter on Bing Crosby's Kraft Music Hall. As his reputation grew, Billy May collaborated with the Phil Harris band on The Jack Benny Show and with Frank Sinatra; their first collaboration, Don't Fence Me In, was broadcast on CBS on December 23, 1944. Capitol Records p[aired Billy May with Alan Livingston to initiate a series of children's recordings with arrangements that included Bozo the Clown and I Taut I Taw A Putty Tat. As an arranger, Billy May's signature includes prominent sliding, "slurping" saxes and glissando sounds produced by whole sections rather than by individual players. His last great project was the documentation of the swing era music, commissioned by Time-Life and completed in 1973. Musical arrangers, hornists, and those interested in Billy May's career will appreciate the extensive discography compiled. The discography covers Billy May as arranger and composer from 1944-1998, as sideman and arranger for others, his work on radio, television, movies, and international appearances, his road band, recordings, both domestic and foreign, and his transcriptions. Data is cross indexed by song title and artist. (source: Nielsen Book Data)