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Claude Thornhill

Biography

Even though some of his recordings were in the periphery of jazz and his orchestra was at its most widely used in the first ’40s, Claude Thornhill’s main importance to jazz was the influence that his arrangements and orchestra’s sound had on cool jazz from the past due ’40s. After their studies at a music conservatory and playing piano in rings located in the Midwest, Thornhill worked well for Paul Whiteman and Benny Goodman in 1934, as well as for Ray Noble’s American music group of 1935-1936 (for whom he also organized). He made an appearance on some Billie Vacation information and his set up of “Loch Lomond” was a big strike for Maxine Sullivan. Although he documented as a innovator in 1937, it had been in 1940 that Thornhill come up with his personal orchestra. The music group, featuring long shades performed by horns that de-emphasized vibrato, experienced an unusual audio that occasionally followed the leader’s tinkling piano. The instrumentation included two French horns along with a tuba; occasionally all six from the reeds performed clarinets together. Although categorized by some like a sweet instead of swing music group (because the group performed a whole lot of ballads), using the addition in 1941 of Gil Evans among the arrangers, the recordings of Thornhill’s orchestra captivated a whole lot of interest within the jazz globe. Over time within the miliary (1942-1945), Thornhill come up with a fresh orchestra, keeping the solutions of Gil Evans (and occasionally using Gerry Mulligan graphs aswell) and offering such soloists as altoist Lee Konitz, clarinetist Danny Polo, and trumpeter Crimson Rodney. A few of Evans’ bop-ish plans for the group had been classic, as well as the Kilometers Davis non-et of 1948 was predicated on lots of the cool-toned concepts from the Thornhill big music group. However, at that time the pianist’s glory times had been over. He continuing leading rings on the part-time basis until his loss of life, but Claude Thornhill was mainly neglected and overlooked during his last 15 years.

Quick Facts


Full Name Claude Thornhill
Died July 2, 1965, Caldwell, New Jersey, United States
Profession Bandleader, Jazz Pianist
Education Cincinnati Conservatory of Music
Nationality American
Spouse Polly Davis
Music Songs Autumn Nocturne, Robbin's Nest, Polka Dots and Moonbeams, Buster's Last Stand, There's a Small Hotel, Snowfall, I Get the Blues When It Rains, Arab Dance, I've Got a One Track Mind, Lovers In Glass Houses, Träumerei, Early Autumn, Sleepy Serenade, Be Careful It's My Heart, Puttin' and Takin', Hungarian Dance No, The Song Is You, The Legend of Old California, The Doll Dance, Under the Willow Tree, Sorta Kinda, Where Has My Little Dog Gone, Sometimes I'm Happy, Lodge Podge, When the Lilacs Bloom Again, Hungarian Dance No. 5, I Remember Mama, Poor Little Rich Girl, For Heaven's Sake, Sing a Love Song, Rose of the Rio Grand, Love Tales
Albums Claude Thornhill & His Orchestra, 1947, Live Form glen Island Casino June / Sept, Jazz Piano Masters - Claude Thornhill, Volume 9, Love Tails, 1947 Transcription Performances, Snowfall - Vol. 1, Claude Thornhill, Snowfall, Snowfall Theme, Harbor Lights, The One and Only: Claude Thornhill, The Claude Thornhill Collection 1934-53, The Great, Nostalgic Memories-The Very Best of Claude Thornhill-Vol. 94, Classy Jazz Collection: Gil Evans, Vol. 2, Claude Thornhill: Night and Day, Classy Jazz Collection: Claude Thornhill, Vol. 5, Sunday Drivin', Best of the Essential Years: Claude Thornhill, Tonight in Time, Classy Jazz Collection: Claude Thornhill, Vol. 9, The Song Is You, Essential Masters, The Master Takes, Colours of Music History, Classy Jazz Collection: Claude Thornhill, Vol. 1, Claude Thornhill - Snowfall, Your Music Around Me, Classy Jazz Collection: Claude Thornhill, Vol. 4, Piano Reflections, The Things I Love, Big Band Series Volume 2, Claude Thornhill Goes Modern, Family Affair, Autumn Nocturne, Jazz Legends: Claude Thornhill, Ebb Tide, A Summer Sky Shines, Classy Jazz Collection: Claude Thornhill, Vol. 2, Riding Tunes, Best of Big Bands: Claude Thornhill, Classy Jazz Collection: Claude Thornhill, Vol. 6, Classy Jazz Collection: Claude Thornhill, Vol. 3, Big Band Series / Original Recording Volume 1, Beyond Patina Jazz Masters: Claude Thornhill Vol. 2, Classy Jazz Collection: Gil Evans, Vol. 1, Original Studio Radio Transcriptions, Beyond Patina Jazz Masters: Claude Thornhill Vol. 1, You're Not so Easy to Forget


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#Fact
1 Pianist and orchestra leader.
2 Inducted into the Big Band and Jazz Hall of Fame in 1984.


Soundtrack

Soundtrack

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Sing Your Song 2011 Documentary writer: "Snowfall"
Grey's Anatomy 2009 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Columbia Thrills of Music 9952: Claude Thornhill and His Orchestra 1947 Short arranger: "Arabian Dance" / performer: "A Sunday Kind of Love", "Oh, You Beautiful Doll", "Arabian Dance"
America, I Love You 1942 Short performer: "America, I Love You"

Actor

Actor

TitleYearStatusCharacter
The Big Broadcast of 1936 1935 Band Members: Piano (as Ray Noble and His Orchestra)

Self

Self

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Cavalcade of Bands 1951 TV Series Himself
Claude Thornhill & Orchestra 1950 Short Himself - Orchestra Leader
Columbia Thrills of Music 9952: Claude Thornhill and His Orchestra 1947 Short Himself, Orchestra Leader
America, I Love You 1942 Short Himself / Bandleader

Archive Footage

Archive Footage

TitleYearStatusCharacter
American Masters 1993 TV Series documentary Himself

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