Just before the outbreak of World War II, the music scene was known as "Name Band" or more commonly "Big Band". During this era of music, Glenn Miller would create his civilian orchestra named "The Miller Band". With this band, he would soon dominate the music scene and reach the top of the polls in 1940 and would maintain his place in 1941 and 1942. The Glenn Miller Band would increase their popularity by radio shows and be featured in two films, Sun Valley Serenade and Orchestra Wives. By 1942, Glenn Miller and his band would become a household name.
On 7 December 1941, Japanese would attack Pearl Harbor and thrust the United States into the already ongoing war in Europe. With this new endeavor by United States, it would have a direct effect on the music scene. A draft is put into effect, enlistment of Patriotic Americans would diminish the ranks of the Big Bands, and fans would now be in combat around the world. The Miller Band was not exempt from feeling the effects of the war due to their status in the music scene. Miller himself aspired to join the military before the attack. By summer of 1942 Miller, thirty-eight and wearing glasses, was not acceptable for the draft. Knowing this he sought to enter by obtaining his commission with the Navy. Miller is never be accepted by the Navy.
Wesley Newton writes, “Miller was obviously aware that the raison d'etre for these bands lay in the raising of troop morale and the creation of esprit de corps”. Miller would eventually get the commission he strives for on 23 November 1942. Miller would struggle to prove the relation between his music and morale of service members overseas. Maj. Gen. Walter R. Weaver would eventually help Miller to prove the relation between the two. Miller would take this opportunity, recruit from the best musicians of that time, and create the 418th Army Air Forces Band in March of 1943. Miller's new band would prove it was crucial to the morale of the service members and women overseas. This would be never clearer than on 24 May 1944. Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, supreme commander for the invasion of France, requested Miller’s band to be located in England to improve morale after the invasion.
The band would eventually perform for thousands upon thousands of troops and allow them a brief escape from the war. John McDonough writes, “Demand was so heavy that Miller broke his band into subdivisions, each under a subordinate reporting to him”. On occasion, the band's studio...