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

Fireworks on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, preceded by a concert with Pitbull, Broadway star Heather Headley, and the Philly Pops big band. Ellen Gray,, "TV picks: 'Power,' 'Welcome America,' 'Succession' and more," 29 June 2018 Yes, sometimes being authentically U2 has meant embracing artifice; sometimes that's meant being the biggest band in the world with the most irresistible, anthemic choruses. Joe Lynch, Billboard, "U2 Brings Out the Sun Ra Arkestra, Pays Tribute to Anthony Bourdain at Legendary Apollo Theater," 13 June 2018 Tampons are basically really big Band-Aids, and there's nothing embarrassing about those. Hannah Orenstein, Seventeen, "17 Surprising Ways You've Internalized Misogyny," 8 Mar. 2019 The Police was one of the biggest bands in the world then—and Patrick Stewart. Maude Campbell, Popular Mechanics, "Everything We Know So Far About Denis Villeneuve's 'Dune'," 14 Jan. 2019 And what’s the through-line that takes you from fronting one of the biggest bands in the history of the world to launching a business in the tattoo-maintenance space? Corey Seymour, Vogue, "131 Totally Uncensored Minutes with David Lee Roth, From His New Tattoo Skincare Line to the Secret of Van Halen," 11 Dec. 2018 The main genre here is jazz—anything from bebop and contemporary jazz to Latin jazz and big bands. Carrie Hutchinson, Condé Nast Traveler, "10 Best Venues & Places for Live Music in Melbourne," 10 Sep. 2018 Last October, Schneider’s ensemble won the DownBeat Readers Poll for best big band, and Schneider took prizes for best composer and arranger. Howard Reich,, "Stars come out for Elmhurst College Jazz Festival," 15 Feb. 2018 That dwarfs the comparable reach of some of the genre’s biggest bands, such as Slayer (284,000 YouTube subscribers), Megadeth (474,000) and Iron Maiden (898,000), putting him in the company of Metallica (3.9 million). Chris Kornelis, WSJ, "Who’s That Covering Coldplay? It’s Loud, Raucous and Involves Headbanging," 30 Oct. 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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Statistics for big band

Last Updated

20 May 2019

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Time Traveler for big band

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

Comments on big band

What made you want to look up big band? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a sum of money that is sent as a payment

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