Glenn Miller Orchestra

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Glenn Miller Orchestra
Glenn Miller Orchestra with Larry O'Brien (director).JPG
Glenn Miller Orchestra, 2009.
Background information
Genres Jazz, Big band
Years active 1937–1944
Members Nick Hilscher, Natalie Angst, Kevin Sheehan, Chris Herald, Cody Leavel, Tyler Clibbon, Ian O'Beirne, Ashley Hall, Robby Yarber, Steve Morley, Joe Young IV, George Reinert III, John Tyler, Joseph Zeigenfus, Jason Bennett, Austin Byrd, Dean Schweiger, Sean Muzzi
Past members Bobby Hackett, Dan Riley, Glenn Miller, Tex Beneke, Beat Kaestli, Ray McKinley, Al Klink, Maurice Purtill, Lenny Hambro, Eddie Durham, Johnny Best, Buddy DeFranco, Peanuts Hucko, Dick Lowenthal, Buddy Morrow, Jimmy Henderson, Dick Gerhart, Henry Mancini, Gary Tole, Clifford Shibly, Jack Sperling, Ray Eberle, Marion Hutton, Dale Orris, Nick Hilscher, Bill Barbour, Dave Ryan, Robbie Hioki, Doug Cook, Barry Springer, Bill Barrett, Mike Duva, Julia Rich (vocal), Charlie Lee, Jeff Hughes, Roscoe Myers, Jimmy Priddy, Trigger Alpert, Willie Schwartz, Billy May, Wally Besser, Darrell Hendricks, Larry Newman, Steve Tracy McCallum, Clayton Lucovich, Holbrook Riles III, Joel Linscheid, Jon Rees, Jonathan McQuade, Nigel Yancey, Seth Lewis, Shawn Williams, James Navan, Barney Bigard, Wilbur Schwartz, Betty Grable, Erskine Hawkins, Buck Clayton, Hoagy Carmichael, Art Tatum

The Glenn Miller Orchestra is a jazz big band originally formed by Glenn Miller. It was arranged around a clarinet and tenor saxophone playing melody, while three other saxophones played the harmony. Miller had already formed one band before this in 1936, but dissolved it as he considered it too similar to other bands of the era.


Miller originally formed a band around 1935-36 which folded in 1937. But they reformed in 1938, and under new management got significant radio airplay and achieved success.[1] In the early 1940s, Miller's orchestra had an hour-long program on NBC-Blue, 5-6 p.m. Eastern time on Saturdays. A review in Billboard commented, "Unusual length of the program allows Miller to display all the top items in his library."[2]

The new band became very popular and recorded a number of chart successes — among these were the ever-popular "Moonlight Serenade", "In the Mood", "Tuxedo Junction", "Pennsylvania 6-5000", "Chattanooga Choo Choo", "A String of Pearls", "At Last", and "(I've Got a Gal In) Kalamazoo."

After the disappearance (and presumed death) of Miller in 1944, the band was reconstituted under the direction of Tex Beneke, its lead tenor saxophonist, singer, and one of Miller's longtime close friends. A few years later, the Miller estate, having parted ways with Beneke, hired Ray McKinley, principal drummer in Miller's Army Air Force band, to organize a new "ghost band" in 1956.

Hollywood contributed to the band's popularity and that of its founder and original members with the 1953 release of The Glenn Miller Story on the big screen. The band garnered award nominations and box office success, as well as top hit status for its soundtrack album in 1954.

The Glenn Miller Orchestra has recorded and performed under various leaders, from 1956 to this day. Singer Nick Hilscher became the director of the touring band in 2012, replacing previous director Gary Tole.


Current as of 2014
  • Nick Hilscher – Male Vocalist and Music Director
  • Natalie Angst – Female Vocalist
  • Kevin Sheehan – Lead Alto Saxophone, Clarinet, Flute, Arranger
  • Chris Herald – 2nd Alto Saxophone, Clarinet
  • Cody Leavel – Tenor Sax 1, Clarinet, Flute
  • Tyler Clibbon – Tenor Saxophone 2, Clarinet
  • Ian O'Beirne – Baritone Saxophone, Alto Saxophone, Bass Clarinet, Bb Clarinet, Flute, Assistant Road Manager
  • Ashley Hall – Lead Trumpet, Road Manager
  • Robby Yarber – Split Lead Trumpet
  • Steve Morley – Jazz Trumpet
  • Joe Young IV – Trumpet
  • George Reinert III – Lead Trombone, Stage Manager
  • John Tyler – 2nd Trombone
  • Joseph Zeigenfus – 3rd Trombone
  • Jason Bennett – Bass Trombone, 4th Trombone, Music Copyist
  • Austin Byrd – Piano
  • Toby Reutter-Harrah – Drums (2015)
  • Sean Muzzi – Bass
  • Moonlight Serenaders Vocal Group: Nick Hilscher, Natalie Angst, Ian O'Beirne, Joseph Zeigenfus, Kevin Sheehan
Past members



See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Gilliland, John (1994). Pop Chronicles the 40s: The Lively Story of Pop Music in the 40s (audiobook). ISBN 978-1-55935-147-8. OCLC 31611854.  Tape 2, side A.
  2. ^ Carter, Dick (January 3, 1942). "On the Air: Glenn Miller". Billboard. Retrieved 26 October 2014. 

External links[edit]