Fletcher Hendersonwas an American pianist, bandleader, arranger and composer, important in the development of big band jazz and swing music. He was often known as "Smack" Henderson.His band circa 1925 included Howard Scott, Coleman Hawkins, Louis Armstrong, Charlie Dixon, Kaiser Marshall, Buster Bailey, Elmer Chambers, Charlie Green, Ralph Escudero and Don Redman.In 1922 he formed his own band, which was resident first at the Club Alabam then at the Roseland, and quickly became known as the best "Black" band in New York. For a time his ideas of arrangement were heavily influenced by those of Paul Whiteman, but when Louis Armstrong joined his orchestra in 1924 Henderson realized there could be a much richer potential for jazz band orchestration. Henderson s band also boasted the formidable arranging talents of Don Redman (from 1922 to 1927). (It should be noted that Henderson actually did few arrangements in the 1920s; most of the besthotsides he recorded were arranged by either Don Redman or Benny Carter. As an arranger, Henderson came into his own in the mid-1930s.)In 1934, Goodman s Orchestra was selected as a house band for the "Let s Dance" radio program. Since he needed new charts every week for the show, his friend John Hammond suggested that he purchase some Jazz charts from Henderson. Many of Goodman s hits from the swing music were arranged by Henderson for his own band in the late 20s and early 30s.In 1939 he disbanded his own band and joined Goodman s, first as both pianist and arranger and then working full-time as the staff arranger. He reformed bands of his own several times in the 1940s, toured with Ethel Waters again in 1948 - 1949. Henderson suffered a stroke in 1950 resulting in partial paralysis that ended his days as a pianist. He died in New York City.