Tex Beneke

Picture of Tex Beneke

Tex Beneke was a talented saxophonist and singer closely associated with Glenn Miller and His Orchestra.  His personal band is also associated with the careers of Eydie Gormé and Henry Mancini. It's Tex we hear soloing on the iconic Miller song "In The Mood" and it's his unique vocals we hear on Miller's recording of "Chattanooga Choo Choo".  Beneke has one of those voices that just stands out.

Tex Beneke started playing saxophone when he was nine years old.  His first professional work was with bandleader Ben Young in 1935, but it was when he joined the Glenn Miller Orchestra three years later that his career took off. Glenn Miller immediately featured Beneke as his primary tenor sax soloist and Beneke played all but a few of the tenor solos on the recordings and personal appearances made by the Glenn Miller Orchestra until it disbanded in late 1942.

Tex moved on to play in Horace Heidt's band for a short time then led a couple of bands while serving in the navy.  Beneke kept in touch with Glenn Miller while they were both in the military and he made it clear that he wanted to reunite with Miller after the war and learn more about leading a band.  That sadly never happened due to Miller's death overseas.

Listen to: "Give Me Five Minutes More" by Tex Beneke

Tex Beneke eventually went on to lead his own successful band as well as becoming the first leader of the post-war, Glenn Miller "ghost" band.

You can hear his music right here on Swing City Radio including the songs:  "Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop", "Give Me Five Minutes More" and "A Girl in Calico".

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