Les Elgart

Les Elgart (born August 3, 1918, in New Haven, CT) began playing trumpet as a teenager and was playing professionally by the age of twenty. During the 1940s he was a member of bands led by Raymond Scott, Charlie Spivak, and Harry James, occasionally finding himself alongside his brother Larry Elgart. They formed the Les & Larry Elgart Ensemble in 1945, hiring Nelson Riddle, Ralph Flanagan, and Bill Finegan to write arrangements. The union was short-lived, however, due to the Musician's Union strike and the waning of swing jazz's popularity. The ensemble broke up in 1946.

In 1952, the brothers reunited and released albums on Columbia Records, many to considerable sales success. Among their popular tunes was "Bandstand Boogie", which was used by Dick Clark as the theme song for the television dance show American Bandstand. By the end of the decade, Elgart quit performing, preferring to...

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