A bandleader is the leader of a band of musicians. The term is most commonly, though not exclusively, used with a group that plays popular music as a small combo or a big band, such as one which plays jazz, blues, rhythm and blues or rock and roll music.
Most bandleaders are also performers with their own band. The bandleader role is dependent on a variety of skills, not just musicianship. A bandleader needs to be a music director and performer. Often the bands are named after their bandleaders. Some older bands have continued operating under their bandleaders' names long after the death of the original bandleader.
- Whiteman, Paul and Lieber, Leslie – How to Be a Bandleader (New York City: Robert M. McBride & Company, 1948)
- Club Date Musicians: Playing the New York Party Circuit. Bruce A. MacLeod. University of Illinois Press. ISBN 9780252019548 (1993)