Will Hudson ( 1908 - 1981 )
Jazz and pop arranger/composer Will Hudson led the Hudson-DeLange Orchestra around the same time (mid- to late '30s) he was writing important pieces like "Moonglow," "Organ Grinder's Swing," and "Hocus Pocus." Born in California in 1908, Hudson lived in Detroit, MI, by the time he entered high school. During this time, he studied arranging music and some of his earliest professional arrangements were for McKinney's Cotton Pickers and Cab Calloway. Hudson soon ended up in N.Y., where he teamed with composer and arranger Irving Mills. They arranged swinging numbers for Fletcher Henderson, Benny Goodman, Louis Armstrong, and Jimmie Lunceford, among others, and by the mid-'30s, created more lasting and substantial songs such as the now-standard "Moonglow" (1934). Hudson is also responsible for the Lunceford early-'30s hit "White Heat," the popular instrumental "Organ Grinder's Swing," the arrangement of the classic "Cherokee" and some scores for Glenn Miller. In addition to his songwriting, Hudson co-led a band with Eddie DeLange from 1935, until assuming full leadership in 1938. The band stayed together until 1941, when Hudson focused on arranging full-time. He even attended Juilliard later that decade to study composition. Some of his more enduring work are the pop songs "Moonlight Rhapsody," "With All My Heart and Soul," "Tormented," "You're My Desire," and "The World Without You," and the jazz numbers "Cowboy in Manhattan," "Monopoly Swing," "Devil's Kitchen," and "Hocus Pocus."
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Friday, April 07, 2023