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Lunch » Tags » Books » Reviews » Chattanooga Choo Choo: The Life and Times of the World Famous Glenn Miller Orchestra

Chattanooga Choo Choo: The Life and Times of the World Famous Glenn Miller Orchestra

1 rating: 5.0
2004 non-fiction book by Richard Grudens

Commemorating the 100th Anniversary of Glenn Miller's life and the 60th anniversary of his disappearance over the English Channel in late 1944, we present the tribute book Glenn Miller fans all over the world have been waiting for, a compendium of authentic … see full wiki

Tags: Books, Nonfiction, Jazz, Classic Big Band
Author: Richard Grudens
Publisher: Celebrity Profiles Publishing
Date Published: March 2004
1 review about Chattanooga Choo Choo: The Life and Times...

Lovingly done history of the venerable Glenn Miller Orchestra.

  • Feb 3, 2010
Rating:
+5
His success did not come overnight.  There were major setbacks along the way and at times Glenn Miller wondered if he would ever find "his sound".  But in the spring of 1939 it finally happened! Glenn Miller and his Orchestra exploded onto the scene with appearances at the Meadowbrook in New Jersey and at the legendary Glen Island Casino in New Rochelle, NY.  Almost overnight they became a cultural phenomenon.   "Chattanooga Choo Choo:  The Life and Times of the World Famous Glenn Miller Orchestra" is a book that took nearly five years to put together,   Author Richard Grudens has gone to great lengths to lovingly recreate the flavor of that Golden Era.  Wonderfully written (in nice large print) and generously sprinkled with dozens of fascinating photographs, "Chattanooga Choo Choo" is a must read for anyone who is a fan of or is curious about the Big Band EraGrudens discusses the history of the Miller outfit from all kinds of different perspectives. In the course of writing this book the author interviewed musicians from the original Glenn Miller Orchestra as well as some of the vocalists and arrangers from those halcyon days so many years ago.  There are also memories from booking agents, record company executives and disc jockeys.  Read transcripts from "live" radio broadcasts and enjoy many recollections of the two movies the band appeared in.  And then there is speculation over what really might have happened to Capt. Glenn Miller on December 15, 1944.  While traveling to entertain U.S. troops in France during World War II, Miller's plane disappeared in bad weather over the English Channel.  Sadly, his body was never  found. 

But fortunately the story did not end on that fateful night.  The Glenn Miller Orchestra, using all of Glenn's original charts, was reorganized in 1956.  It continues to this day under the direction of Larry O'Brien. Grudens brings us up to date with information on the members of the current orchestra.  A few years ago my wife and I were able to catch a performance of the Glenn Miller Orchestra at the beautifully refurbished Stadium Theater in Woonsocket, R.I.   What a great venue!
It was an absolute joy to see them and much to my surprise there were a lot of youngsters in the audience.  I was even able to get my copy of this book autographed by featured vocalists Julia Rich and Nick Hilscher.  You can order a copy of "Chattanooga Choo Choo:  The Life and Times of the World Famous Glenn Miller Orchestra" through amazon.com or if you prefer just dial PENNSYLVANIA 6-5000.  A terrific read that can be enjoyed by music fans and history buffs alike.  
Very highly recommended!
Lovingly done history of the venerable Glenn Miller Orchestra. Lovingly done history of the venerable Glenn Miller Orchestra. Lovingly done history of the venerable Glenn Miller Orchestra. Lovingly done history of the venerable Glenn Miller Orchestra.

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