big band


Definition of big band 

: a band that is larger than a combo and that usually features a mixture of ensemble playing and solo improvisation typical of jazz or swing

Examples of big band in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

His parents were musicians, he in big bands and she in classical chamber groups. Marc Fisher,, "Dan Ingram, early 'Top 40' DJ known for biting humor, dies at 83," 29 June 2018 Tour, featuring the retro sounds of a 19-member big band-horn ensemble led by the great guitarist, arrives in December. Molly Glentzer, Houston Chronicle, "SPA bringing Margaret Atwood, Radiolab's Jad Abumrad to Houston," 21 June 2018 Many of the guests sound a little daunted by Mr. Marsalis’s ultratight little big band — but not Ray Charles from 2003 in one of his last recordings, still in great voice. Jon Pareles, New York Times, "The Playlist: Shawn Mendes Shows His Scars, and 9 More New Songs," 23 Mar. 2018 July 12 will bring the Bill O’Connell Big Band to Oak Brook, featuring songs from the oldies to the more modern, with contemporary arrangements of traditional big band songs. Chuck Fieldman,, "Oak Brook summer concert series underway," 1 July 2018 The 1,200 or so musicians performing at this year’s Next Gen festival represent high schools, colleges and middle schools, playing in big bands, combos and vocal ensembles. Jesse Hamlin, San Francisco Chronicle, "The kids swing at Monterey’s Next Generation Jazz Festival," 21 Feb. 2018 His parents were musicians, he in big bands and she in classical chamber groups. Marc Fisher, Washington Post, "Dan Ingram, popular DJ who poked fun at his own medium, dies at 83," 28 June 2018 Ray Anthony, 96, whose big band played the Academy's 1958 shindig, recalls the Rat Pack glamour of the era and a party with the starlet. Seth Abramovitch, The Hollywood Reporter, "Oscars: Bandleader at First Governors Ball Reminisces on Parties, Marilyn Monroe," 1 Mar. 2018 This concert, part of the Artes Unplugged series at the Rose Marine Theater, features Fort Worth singer Stephanie Gonzales and the band performing retro styles of music including big band, swing, jazz and more. Sandy Guerra-cline, star-telegram, "River rockers, kid actors and peaches make the top 10 list of things to do in DFW," 11 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'big band.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of big band

1917, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

23 Sep 2018

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The first known use of big band was in 1917

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More Definitions for big band

big band


English Language Learners Definition of big band

: a large musical group that usually plays jazz music that people dance to

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