William 'Count' Basie started The Count Basie Orchestra in 1935, in Kansas City, Missouri. Within a year, America was listening in on popular radio shows throughout the country to hear what would become "The greatest swing band in all the land!" A phenomenon was born in 1935, that is still going strong today!
The Count Basie Orchestra has won every respected jazz poll in the world at least once, won 18 Grammy Awards, performed for Kings, Queens, and other world Royalty, appeared in several movies, television shows, at every major jazz festival and major concert hall in the world. Some of the greatest soloists, composers, arrangers, and vocalists in jazz history such as Lester Young, Billie Holiday, Frank Foster, Thad Jones, Sonny Payne, Freddie Green, Snooky Young, Frank Wess, and Joe WIlliams, became international stars once they began working with the legendary Count Basie Orchestra.