CD Spotlight. A Very Joyous Disc - Brahms arranged by Kenneth Woods impresses Alice McVeigh. '... this is an excellent performance representing a useful, joyful and even inspired addition to the orchestral repertoire.'
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Born in Chicago on 11 February 1919, Baker was the youngest of four children of Russian immigrants, and made his debut as a violinist in Chicago, aged six.
Later, he was concertmaster of Stokowski's All-American Youth Orchestra and a member of Toscanini's NBC Symphony Orchestra. After serving with the air force in World War II, he became a session musician and worked as concertmaster of Paramount Pictures' studio orchestra, playing for composers such as John Barry, Bernard Herrmann, André Previn, Franz Waxman and John Williams.