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 There was talk of the second album going in a big band direction. Jeremy Hallock, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 30 Jan. 2024 What Bonamassa did take from King is his big band, full of fine players and a classy stage presentation. L. Kent Wolgamott, Sacramento Bee, 25 Jan. 2024 Minton’s in Harlem was where jazz musicians, from out-of-towners to locals performing in nearby big band theaters in Harlem, sought refuge during late-night jam sessions and a new genre, bebop, was born. Mia Jackson, New York Times, 5 Jan. 2024 Blaine and Kurt perform this as a part of the old-timey, black-and-white local TV special, with a big band vibe that perfectly fits the set. Vulture, 19 Dec. 2023 He was partnered in a 1969-71 stint with Balls with ex-Move guitarist Trevor Burton; the pair also served time in Ginger Baker’s Air Force, the former Cream and Blind Faith drummer’s fusion big band. Chris Morris, Variety, 5 Dec. 2023 Advertisement One of the few musicians anywhere whose credits include drumming with big band legend Lionel Hampton and free-jazz bassist William Parker, Moran formed Slavic Soul Party! George Varga, San Diego Union-Tribune, 1 Dec. 2023 She felt delivered back to the hey-day of the big band era. Jim Masters, Chicago Tribune, 4 Sep. 2023 Catt Sirten’s sunset concerts at Daphne’s Bayfront Park were once a hit, attracting patrons on a Sunday evening with big band music and a picturesque view of the Mobile Bay. John Sharp |, al, 11 Aug. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'big band.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1917, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of big band was in 1917

Dictionary Entries Near big band

Cite this Entry

“Big band.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Feb. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!