The author used to do double duty on Metronome magazine back in the days when the big bands were the sound from Swinging Sammy Kaye to the ""Mickey Mouse"" outfits where ""the corn was as high as a piccolo's A."" The down-beat starting the rage was Benny Goodman and leaders took off in as many different directions as their divergent personalities, from the sweet sounds of gentle Les Brown to the superlative arrangements of feisty Tommy Dorsey to the ricky-tick style of Shep Fields. Simon knew them all and the musicians and the singers--don't forget a boy named Sinatra who contributes the introduction, or the Day America's sweetheart named Doris stepped on the bandstand. Good profiles with enough detail to satiate any nostalgic reader. Best read with a stack of records on the victrola.