Al Hirt Plays Bert Kaempfert

AL “He’s the King” HIRT
Alois Maxwell Hirt was born November 7, 1922 in New Orleans, Louisiana. He was 6 years old when he got his first trumpet from a pawnshop, and it proved to be a life-long love affair. Al’s first professional gig, at the age of 17, was calling the horses to the post at the Louisiana Fairgrounds in 1939. He studied classical trumpet at the Cincinnati Conservatory until entering the US Army, where he spent much of his time playing with the 82nd Army Air Force Band. Upon his discharge, he freelanced in swing bands led by Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey, Ray McKinley, Benny Goodman and Horace Heidt, but returned to New Orleans in the early 50’s and formed his own band, soon becoming the house band for Dan Levy’s Pier 600 Club.
album cover Starting around 1955 he sometimes teamed with Pete Fountain (clarinet) and by 1960 signed with RCA records and made quite a name for himself. During this decade he had several “pop” hits such as Cotton Candy and Java which introduced him to the “mainstream” public. His many accompishments include a 1965 standing room only concert at Carnegie Hall and a Grammy for the recording Java. He also played at the inaguration of president John F. Kennedy. Playing concerts across the country, his sets included Latin, pop, jazz, and classical works as well as Dixieland numbers.
Al recorded more than 50 albums in his career, and played for millions of people around the world including Pope John Paul II and 8 U.S. Presidents. He earned 4 gold albums and 1 platinum.
Al Hirt Plays Bert Kaempfert
Lady
Spanish Eyes
Afrikaan Beat
Magic Trumpet
Sweet Maria
The World We Knew
Bye Bye Blues
A Swingin’ Safari
Danke Schoen
Strangers In The Night
Wonderland by Night