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Tommy Dorsey Livin' in a Great Big Way, A Biography by Peter J. Levinson

Tommy Dorsey Livin' in a Great Big Way, A Biography


Tommy Dorsey Livin' in a Great Big Way, A Biography by Peter J. Levinson

Swing has never gone out of style. It was the music the Greatest Generation danced to- and went to war to. And no musician evokes the Big Band era more strikingly than Tommy Dorsey, whose soaring trombone play and hit tunes influenced popular music for a generation. Tommy Dorsey (1905-1956) led a rich and complex life. Beginning with his childhood in the coal mining towns of Pennsylvania, we follow the young trombonist's journey to fame and fortune during the Jazz Age. Tommy, with his brother Jimmy, created one of the most popular bands of the era and played with such giants as Bing Crosby and Glenn Miller. They also launched the career of a skinny young singer named Frank Sinatra. But Tommy's volcanic personality eventually split the band and Tommy went off on his own. Drawing on exhaustive new research and scores of interviews with the musicians who knew him best, Levinson delves into Dorsey's famously eccentric lifestyle and his oversize appetite for drink, women, and perfection. The first biography on Dorsey in more than thirty years, Tommy Dorsey is a dazzling portrait of the Big Band's brightest star- his tumultuous life, his turbulent times, and the unforgettable music that made him a legend.


This is the best biography of a big-band leader I have read in years... The picture it paints of Dorsey the person is not always pretty...but it rings true...He covers the full arc of Dorsey's career in a way that previous books about him have not. Crescendo and Jazz Magazine

About the Author

Peter J. Levinson is the author of Trumpet Blues: The Life of Harry James and September in the Rain: The Life of Nelson Riddle. He has worked for four decades in the entertainment business as a publicist, freelance writer, booking agent, and personal manager. He lives in California.

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Book Info

Publication date

7th November 2006


Peter J. Levinson

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Da Capo Press Inc an imprint of INGRAM PUBLISHER SERVICES US


384 pages


Biography: arts & entertainment
Rock & Pop music



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