Flying Home Hampton Lionel 1965
Lionel Hampton and his Orchestra, filmed here in 1965, play one of Hampton's most requested pieces "Flying Home"
"Flying Home" had its genesis while Hampton was in the Benny Goodman band. A gig in 1939 required them to fly from Los Angeles to Atlantic City, the first time Hampton had been on a plane. He began whistling a tune while waiting for the plane to taxi. Goodman asked him what it was, and Hampton said, "I don't know. We can call it 'Flying Home,' I guess." (Hampton later confessed that the tune was a way for him to keep his mind off of the upcoming flight.) They played it for the first time with the Goodman Quartet that night and later that year Goodman recorded the first version of the song, featuring a memorable solo from pioneering guitarist Charlie Christian. Hampton liked the song so much that it became his theme once he left Goodman.