By September, he formed a big band with seven brass, five saxes, four rhythm, and fifteen strings. Remote broadcasts noted the band performing in good form and Shaw dazzling the crowd with his clarinet. On December 7, three months into the tour, the piece band was in the midst of a matinee performance in Providence, Rhode Island, when he was given a note about the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor.
The note instructed him to tell military personnel to return to their bases. As the audience left, he knew the band was coming to an end. After 18 months playing for Navy personnel, sometimes as many as four concerts a day in battle zones, including Guadalcanal , Shaw returned to the U. Shaw credited his time in the Navy from to as a period of renewed introspection. His autobiography, The Trouble With Cinderella: An Outline of Identity , was published in with later reprint editions in and Revealing downbeat elements of the music business, Shaw explained that "the trouble with Cinderella" is "nobody ever lives happily ever after.
I flipped over it! He worked for years on his page autobiographical novel, The Education of Albie Snow , but the three-volume work remained unpublished. After his discharge in , he formed another band, this time what could be considered a modern big band in that it contained what is now considered the standard eight brass and five saxes.
It did not include any strings and was based in Hollywood, California, where Shaw was living. He continued to record for RCA Victor, as he had before the war, and limited the band's personal appearances to military bases in California. He made a few records for Musicraft before the band broke up, and all of the recordings for Musicraft from were staffed by top-notch session musicians. The big band was back in the studio, this time including strings. On some of the sides, Torme was also featured with his vocal group the Meltones.
In July , Shaw undertook a brief but historic Australian tour for promoter Lee Gordon on which he shared the bill with drummer Buddy Rich and vocalist Ella Fitzgerald. After completing that tour Shaw stopped playing the clarinet, citing his own perfectionism, which, he later said, would have killed him. He explained to a reporter, "In the world we live in, compulsive perfectionists finish last. You have to be Lawrence Welk or, on another level, Irving Berlin , and write the same kind of music over and over again.
I'm not able to do that, and I have taken the clarinet as far as anyone can possibly go. To continue playing would be a disservice.
In , after years of prodding by Williard Alexander, the year-old Shaw organized a band and selected clarinetist Dick Johnson as bandleader and soloist. The year-old Johnson, an accomplished woodwind and saxophonist and native of Brockton, Massachusetts, was no stranger to jazz having recorded numerous albums of his own and had idolized Shaw's playing throughout his life. Shaw's music library, which was the product of his almost 20 years of activity in the music business, contained numerous arrangements of monumental status of popular music in addition to many original big band jazz compositions of the era.
Shaw rehearsed his new band, based out of Boston, Massachusetts , and the band made its official debut on New Year's Eve at the Glen Island Casino in New Rochelle , New York, the same launching pad for many bands of the swing era decades earlier, when Shaw and his bands were in their prime. Shaw appeared with the band throughout its first few years, limiting his role to being its conductor and front man, while leaving the clarinet playing duties to Johnson.
In , another week-long series of strenuous rehearsals followed during which Shaw added more repertoire, including many arrangements and compositions that were from the later years of his career Shaw had never recorded. By though, Shaw was no longer touring with the band, quietly content that Johnson and the band kept true to Shaw's band spirit and vision. He would, however, show up on occasion "just to hear how things sounded". Shaw made several musical shorts in for Vitaphone and Paramount Pictures.
He portrayed himself in the Fred Astaire film, Second Chorus , which featured Shaw and his orchestra playing Concerto for Clarinet , and his —41 Hollywood period Star Dust band can be heard throughout the soundtrack. In , he was a mystery guest on What's My Line? These are times for the odious, the untalented, the ugly, the hirsute, the cacophonous so-called rock stars.
Shaw made his last records of new material on which he was merely conducting and not playing in He spent much of the second half of his life devoted to writing and other pursuits, although he returned to the recording studios in to conduct an album of some of his biggest instrumental hits from with a band that was filled by other notable veteran sidemen of the Swing Era, some of whom had worked for him three decades earlier and were at the time still working professional musicians in their prime.
In he surprised the music world once again by assembling a piece touring big band under the direction of clarinetist Dick Johnson and Shaw appeared with it through , at which time he turned the band over to Johnson once and for all. The anti-nostalgic Shaw explicitly stated that he wanted this last band to focus on jazz and lesser known later works from and especially , as well as new material written for the band, much of which was never recorded.
He was married eight times including to Lana Turner and Ava Gardner Wikipedia , bigbandlibrary. Shaw himself would guest conduct from time to time, ending his self-imposed retirement. In , Artie Shaw's band library and manuscript collection was donated to the University of Arizona. In , he was presented with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. He had two sons by Kern and Dowling. Shaw had adult onset diabetes. In December , he died due to the disease at age From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
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