Reflections on “The Far East Suite” (Podcast #17-007)



This podcast episode features three looks at Ellington/Strayhorn’s Far East Suite. The original, of course and then two interpretations that bend, yet don’t break, the  material to fit their creative impulses and their very different instrumentations.

The Tony Overwater Trio in conjunction with the Calefax Reed Quintet, has no keyboard or brass.

Slavic Soul Party! is in the brass band tradition, with accordion and tuba supplying the rhythm section’s harmonic functions.

Both groups creatively use their unique configurations to add stellar interpretations of the Ellington/Strayhorn canon.



“We especially thank Ellington and his colleagues for filling life with beauty and grace when so much was denied to them.”

– from the liner notes from Slavic Soul Party! Plays Duke Ellington’s Far East Suite



 

ellington and gonsalves in iraq

Paul Gonsalves and Duke Ellington sharing a hookah in Ctesiphon, Iraq during their State Department Tour in 1963.



 

The Ellington band was broadcast on TV on November 14, 1963 from Khuld Hall, Baghdad, Iraq. The resulting video, “Le Roi du Jazz Americain DUKE ELLINGTON ET SON ORCHESTRE” (The King of American Jazz, Duke Ellington and his Orchestra) is available to view (or download for free, courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration) at this link.



 

ellington-accordion

Duke Ellington and the accordion



The recordings heard on this podcast episode:



 treasury show vol 23

Take the “A” Train (CD: “The Treasury Shows, Volume 23” Storyville 9039023)

Recorded 24 August 1946. Radio broadcast from the Meadowbrook Gardens Cafe in Culver City, California

Duke Ellington – piano


 

img_0796

Tourist Point of View//Depk//Blue Pepper (Far East of the Blues)//Agra//Amad//Ad Lib on Nippon (CD: “The Far East Suite” Bluebird 7640-2-RB)

Recorded 19-21 December 1966, New York City

Cat Anderson, Herbie Jones, Mercer Ellington, Cootie Williams – trumpets; Lawrence Brown, Chuck Connors, Buster Cooper – trombones; Jimmy Hamilton,  Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; John Lamb– bass; Rufus Jones– drums.


 

overwater

Tourist Point of View//Depk//Agra//Amad//Ad Lib on Nippon (CD: “The Far East Suite” Bluebird 7640-2-RB)

Recorded 16 February 2005, live at the Bimhuis, Amsterdam

Maarten Ornstein – tenor sax; Tony Overwater – bass; Wim Kegel – drums; Oliver Boekhoorn – oboe, English Horn; Ivar Berix – clarinet; Raaf Hekkema – alto sax; Jelte Althuis – bass clarinet; Alban Wesly – bassoon.


 

slavic soul party

Tourist Point of View//Depk//Blue Pepper//Amad//Ad Lib on Nippon (CD: “Slavic Soul Party! Plays Duke Ellington’s Far East Suite” Ropeadope RAD-314)

Recorded November 2014, live at the Barbes, Brooklyn

John Carlson, Kenny Warren – trumpet; Matt Musselman, Tim Vaughn – trombone; Peter Hess – reeds; Peter Stan – accordion; Ron Caswell – tuba; Chris Stormquist, Matt Moran – percussion.

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Portrait of Mahalia Jackson (Podcast #17-006)

“Bill Putnam, founder, builder, recording engineer, and President of Universal Recording Studios in Chicago, was having a party on a yacht one evening out on Lake Michigan. There were a lot of bigwigs from the Loop there, and a representative of Columbia Records came up to me, all glowing.

“Say you must hear this new girl we’ve got signed up!” he said.

“Who’s that?”

“Mahalia Jackson.”

“Oh, yeah, she’s a good cook.”

“No, she’s a singer.”

“I know,” I said, “but she’s a good cook, too.”

She was the best, a great cook. I had been to her house several times before ever she signed with Columbia, and she always had fine soul food out there.

One of the memorable occasions was when we made “Come Sunday” with her in 1958. Billy Strayhorn was down in Florida, but I had told him the key and he sent the arrangement. Ray Nance was there with his violin, and it all came off well.”

–Duke Ellington, Music Is My Mistress

 

mahalia-2 1970 nola jazz and heritage fest

Duke Ellington and Mahalia Jackson at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, 1970



 

“Come Sunday” appears in the in the United Methodist Hymnal. C. Michael Hawn explains how it came to be. The song is also the subject of a “hymn study.”

 


 

Jazz_on_a_Summer's_Day_FilmPoster

Jazz on a Summer’s Day



The recordings heard on this podcast episode:



 

newport 1958

Take the “A” Train//Come Sunday//Keep Your Hand on the Plow (CD: “Live at Newport 1958” Sony Music Distribution 53584)
Recorded 21 July 1958, New York City

Mahalia Jackson – vocal; Cat Anderson, Harold Baker, Clark Terry – trumpets; Ray Nance – trumpet, violin; Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, John Sanders – trombones; Jimmy Hamilton,  Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Bill Graham, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Jimmy Woode – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.


 

bbb2

(Part IV) Come Sunday//(Part VI) 23rd Psalm (CD: “Black, Brown, and Beige” Sony Music Distribution 53584)
Recorded 11 February 1958, New York City

Mahalia Jackson – vocal; Cat Anderson, Harold Baker, Clark Terry -trumpet; Ray Nance – trumpet, violin; Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, John Sanders – trombone; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope,  Bill Graham,  Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Jimmy Woode – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.


 

Girls Suite

Mahalia from “The Girls Suite” (LP: “The Girls Suite and The Perfume Suite” Columbia )

Recorded 19 September 1961, Los Angeles

Willie Cook, Edward Mullens, Cat Anderson, Ray Nance – trumpet; Louis Blackburn, Lawrence Brown, Chuck Connors – trombone; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Aaron Bell – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.



MI0001691166
Portrait of Mahalia Jackson (CD: “New Orleans Suite” Warner Bros. 7411644)

Recorded 13 May 1970, New York City

Cootie Williams, Cat Anderson, Mercer Ellington, Fred Stone – trumpet; Booty Wood, Julian Priester, Chuck Connors – trumpet; Russell Procope, Norris Turney, Harold Ashby, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Joe Benjamin – bass; Rufus Jones – drums.




 

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Harlem (Podcast #17-005)

1932 map of harlem nightclubs

“Harlem is a place, a place in New York City, bordered on the south by Central Park and on the north by 145th Street, the Harlem and East River on the east, and the Hudson River on the west……

We would like now to take you on a tour of this place called Harlem. It has always had more churches than cabarets. It is Sunday morning. We are strolling from 110th Street up Seventh Avenue, heading north through the Spanish and West Indian neighborhood toward the 125th Street business area. Everybody is nicely dressed, and on their way to or from church. Everybody is in a friendly mood. Greetings are polite and pleasant, and on the opposite side of the street, standing under a street lamp, is a real hip chick. She, too, is in a friendly mood. You may hear a parade go by, or a funeral, or you may recognize the passage of those who are making our Civil Rights demands. (Hereabouts, in our performance, Cootie Williams pronounces the word on his trumpet – Harlem!)”

– Duke Ellington, Music Is My Mistress



“Civil Rights demands” and activism landed Duke Ellington in the cross hairs of J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI. Click here to view his FBI file.



Video – Cab Calloway remembers the music clubs of Harlem



The Harlem Renaissance



harlem air shaft score



Journal of Jazz Studies article on Harlem Air Shaft by Dr. Edward Green



Duke Ellington performing A Tone Parallel to Harlem in London, 1964:



Harlem as performed by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra:

 



The recordings heard on this podcast episode:



 

uptown

Take the “A” Train (CD: “Ellington Uptown” Columbia Legacy 87066)

Recorded 30 June 1952, New York City

Willie Cook, Cat Anderson, Clark Terry, Ray Nance – trumpet; Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, Juan Tizol – trombone; Russell Procope, Hilton Jefferson, Jimmy Hamilton, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Wendell Marshall – bass; Louie Bellson – drums; Betty Roche – vocal.


 

armstrong ellington

Drop Me Off in Harlem (CD: “The Complete Louis Armstrong & Duke Ellington Sessions” Roulette Records / Blue Note 5245462)

Recorded 3 April 1961, New York City

Louis Armstrong – trumpet, vocal; Trummy Young – trombone; Barney Bigard – clarinet; Duke Ellington – piano; Mort Herbert – bass; Danny Barcelona – drums.


 

Highlights

Harlem Air Shaft (CD: “Highlights of the Great 1940-1942 Band” Avid AMSC1143)

Recorded 22 July 1940, New York City

Wallace Jones, Cootie Williams, Rex Stewart – trumpet; Lawrence Brown, Joe Nanton, Juan Tizol – trombone; Barney Bigard, Johnny Hodges, Otto Hardwicke, Ben Webster, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Fred Guy – guitar; Jimmie Blanton – bass; Sonny Greer – drums.


 

treasury show vol 4

Sugar Hill Penthouse (CD: “The Treasury Shows, Volume 4” Storyville Records 903 9004)

Recorded 10 October, 1945, Live at The New Zanibar, New York City

Rex Stewart, Taft Jordan, Ray Nance, Shelton Hemphill, Cat Anderson – trumpet; Joseph “Tricky Sam” Nanton, Lawrence Brown, Claude Jones – trombone; Johnny Hodges, Otto Hardwicke, Al Sears, Jimmy Hamilton, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Fred Guy – guitar; Junior Raglin – bass; Sonny Greer – drums.


 

elling_duke_complete1_101b

Harlem Speaks (CD: “The Complete 1932-1940 Brunswick, Columbia and Master Recordings of Duke Ellington and his Famous Orchestra” Mosaic Records #248)

Recorded 15 August 1933, New York City

Arthur Whetsel, Cootie Williams, Freddie Jenkins – trumpet; Lawrence Brown, Joe Nanton, Juan Tizol – trombone; Barney Bigard, Johnny Hodges, Otto Hardwicke, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Fred Guy – guitar; Wellman Braud – bass; Sonny Greer – drums.


 

Great Paris Concert

Echoes of Harlem (CD: “The Great Paris Concert”  Collectables 7818)

Recorded 23 February 1963, Paris

Cootie Williams, Cat Anderson, Ray Nance, Roy Burrowes – trumpet; Lawrence Brown, Buster Cooper, Chuck Connors – trombone; Johnny Hodges, Russell Procope, Jimmy Hamilton, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Ernie Shepard – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.


 

Reprise

Harlem [aka A Tone Parallel to Harlem] (CD: “The Reprise Studio Recordings” Mosaic Records #193)

Recorded 31 January 1963, Paris

Cootie Williams, Roy Burrowes, Cat Anderson, Ray Nance – trumpet; Lawrence Brown, Buster Cooper, Chuck Connors – trombone; Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Jimmy Hamilton, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Ernie Shepard – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums; Paris Symphony Orchestra.

 



 

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“Take A Train” (Podcast #17-004)

atrainduke a train

“You know the record, Daybreak Express? Well, when we were in the South, we’d travel by train in two Pullmans and a baggage car. Duke would lie there resting, and listening to the trains. Those southern engineers could pull a whistle like nobody’s business. He would hear how the train clatter over the crossing, and he’d get up and listen to the engine. He’d listen as it pulled out of a station, huffing and puffing, and he’d start building from there. Then, for when it was really rolling, he’d put something that [Sidney] Bechet played into the song. He had the whistles down perfectly, too. He’s quite a man!” – Ellington clarinetist Barney Bigard, The World of Duke Ellington


 

This video includes a snippet of Daybreak Express:

 

You can get the score and/or band parts to Daybreak Express from the Smithsonian. Click here for details.

daybreak


 

519AzoP1DtL._SX336_BO1,204,203,200_

Riding On Duke’s Train, by Mick Carlon, is in the process of being made into an animated feature. Click here for details! And here’s the link to their Facebook page.


 



atrain



The recordings heard on this podcast episode:



 

Ella and Ellington

Take the “A” Train (CD: “Ella Fitzgerald sings the Duke Ellington Songbook” Essential Jazz Classics EJC 55426)

Recorded 24 June 1957, New York City

Ella Fitzgerald – vocal; Willie Cook, Cat Anderson, Harold Baker, Clark Terry, Ray Nance, Dizzy Gillespie – trumpets; Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, John Sanders – trombones; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Jimmy Woode – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.



41HG64z6N4L._SX450_

Daybreak Express (CD:“Highlights from the Duke Ellington Centennial Edition (1927-1973)” RCA Victor 09026636722)

Recorded 04 December 1933, New York City

Arthur Whetsel, Cootie Williams, Freddie Jenkins, Louis Bacon – trumpet; Lawrence Brown, Joe Nanton – trombone; Barney Bigard, Johnny Hodges, Otto Hardwicke, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Fred Guy – guitar; Wellman Braud – bass; Sonny Greer – drums.


 

ellington 55

Happy-Go_Lucky Local (CD: “Ellington ’55” EMI Music Distribution 0688827)

Recorded 17 January 1954, Chicago

Willie Cook, Cat Anderson, Clark Terry, Ray Nance, Dizzy Gillespie – trumpet;  Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, George Jean – trombone; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope, Rick Henderson, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Wendell Marshall – bass; Dave Black – drums.


 

tpt

Night Train (LP: “The Solid Trumpet of Cootie Williams” Moodsville MVLP-27)

Recorded 4 April 1962

Cootie Williams – trumpet; Nat Jones – piano; Harold Dodson – bass; Bill Peeples – drums.


 

blues in orbit

Track 360 (CD: “Blues In Orbit” Columbia / Sony Music 88697492062)

Recorded 4 February 1958, Los Angeles

Cat Anderson, Harold Baker, Clark Terry, Ray Nance – trumpet; Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, John Sanders – trumpet; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope, Bill Graham, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Jimmy Woode – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.


 

51KH0zlM8+L._SX355_

The Old Circus Train (CD: “Never Before Released Recordings (1965-1972) Music Masters Jazz 5041)

Recorded 15 August 1966, New York City

Cootie Williams, Cat Anderson, Herbie Jones, Mercer Ellington – trumpet; Lawrence Brown, Buster Cooper, Chuck Connors – trombone; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; John Lamb – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.


 

ellington suites
Loco Madi (from the Uwis Suite) (CD:  “The Ellington Suites” Original Jazz Classics OJC 34614)

Recorded 5 October 1972, New York City

Cootie Williams, Mercer Ellington, Harold “Money” Johnson, Johnny Coles – trumpet; Booty Wood, Vincente Prudente, Chuck Connors – trombone; Russell Procope, Norris Turney, Harold Minerve, Harold Ashby, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Joe Benjamin – bass; Wulf Freedman – bass guitar; Rufus Jones – drums.



 

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Portrait of Clark Terry (Podcast #17-003)

“The first time I ever heard about Clark Terry was when Charlie Barnet told me about him. Charlie was raving: ‘Clark Terry is the greatest trumpet player in the world. You wait and see. Or better still, go get him for your band, but hurry, because soon everybody is going to be trying to get him.’ I consider myself lucky indeed to get him in 1951.

Like Shorty Baker, Clark is from St. Louis, a city that seems to specialize in producing fine trumpet players. Although I don’t think he has had the recognition he deserves, there is one area I know where he is very much appreciated. He is a busy man, but he always finds the time to help the college bands around the country, and I am sure many a youngster has been inspired by him both as a man and as a musician.

When a trumpet player imitates Louis Armstrong, Louis gets the credit. When a trumpet player decides that his style is to be built on Dizzy Gillespie’s, Dizzy gets the credit. The same thing with those saxophone players who copied Coleman Hawkins and Charlie Parker. But today, although I hear a whole new world of flugelhorn stylists formed behind Clark Terry, I hear non of the prime authorities on the subject say, ‘Clark Terry did this sixteen years ago.’ If this is not recognized soon, he could grow up to be the Barzillai Lew of the flugelhorn.” – Duke Ellington, Music Is My Mistress 

Clark_Terrycirca_mid-50s

Betty Grable, Harry James, Clark Terry, Duke Ellington (mid – 1950s)



Clark: The Autobiography of Clark Terry (University of California Press)

Clark



Keep On Keepin’ On, a documentary of Clark Terry’s mentor relationship with young blind piano prodigy Justin Kauflin:

keep-on-keepin-on



I was fortunate enough to have seen Clark Terry in concert a few times. Below are autographs I obtained at a couple of the gigs:

CT Autograph2

CT Autograph1



 

Clark Terry with Count Basie



 

Transcriptions of Clark Terry’s solo on Boo-Dah (from “…And his mother called him Bill) by Kevin Sun



Transcription of Clark Terry’s solo on Blues for Smedley by Jeff Helgesen



The Duke Ellington trumpet section featured on El Gato



Clark Terry’s inimical Mumbles routine!



Clark Terry tells the story on how he joined the Ellington band:



A master educator, here’s Clark Terry dispensing some of his lifetime of wisdom:



The recordings heard on this podcast episode:



duke with a difference

Take the “A” Train (CD: “Duke With A Difference” Original Jazz Classics 229)

Recorded 6 September 1957, New York City

Clark Terry – trumpet; Britt Woodman – trombone; Johnny Hodges, Paul Gonsalves – reeds; Tyree Glenn – vibes; Jimmy Woode – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.


 

drum is a woman
Hey Buddy Bolden (CD: “A Drum Is A Woman” Sony Music Distribution COL4713202)

Recorded 25 September 1956, New York City

Willie Cook, Cat Anderson, Ray Nance – trumpet; Clark Terry – trumpet, flugelhorn; Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, John Sanders – trombones; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Rick Henderson, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano and narration; Jimmy Woode – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums; Joya Sherrill, Margaret Tynes, Choir – vocals.


 

such sweet thunderUp and Down, Up and Down (I will lead them Up and Down) (LP/CD “Such Sweet Thunder” Columbia CL 1033/Columbia/Legacy 65568)

Recorded 24 April 1957, New York City

Willie Cook, Cat Anderson(t); Clark Terry(t,fl); Ray Nance – violin; Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, John Sanders – trombones; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Jimmy Woode – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.


 

capitol mosaic

Stardust (CD “The Complete Capitol Recordings of Duke Ellington” Mosaic Records MQ8-160)

Recorded 7 April  1953, Hollywood, California

Willie Cook, Cat Anderson, Clark Terry, Ray Nance – trumpet; Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson,Juan Tizol – trombone; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope, Rick Henderson, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Wendell Marshall – bass; Butch Ballard – drums.



festival session

Idiom ’59, Part IV, Perdido (CD: “Festival Session” Sony Music Distribution COL4684022)
Recorded 8 September 1959, New York City

Cat Anderson, Harold Baker, Andres Marenguito, Willie Cook, Ray Nance – trumpets, Clark Terry – trumpet, flugelhorn; Britt Woodman, John Sanders, Quentin Jackson -trombones; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington(p); Jimmy Woode – bass; Jimmy Johnson,Sam Woodyard – drums


 

newport 1958Juniflip (CD: “Live at Newport 1958” Sony Music Distribution 53584)
Recorded 21 July 1958, New York City

Cat Anderson, Harold Baker, Ray Nance – trumpets; Clark Terry – flugelhorn; Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, John Sanders – trombones; Jimmy Hamilton,  Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Bill Graham, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Jimmy Woode – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.



quincy jones



Boogie Stop Shuffle
 (CD: “Big Band Bossa Nova, The Newest Latin American Rhythm” Polygram Records/Verve 5075252)

Recorded 1962, New York City

Quincy Jones – arranger, conductor; Clark Terry – trumpet; Alan Raph -trombone; Julius Watkins- french horn; Phil Woods, Paul Gonsalves, Jerome Richardson – reeds; Lalo Schifrin – piano; Jim Hall – guitar; Chris White – bass; Rudy Collins – drums; Jack Del Rio, Carlos Gomez, Jose Paula – percussion.


 

terry brookmeyer
Mood Indigo
(CD: “Clark Terry – Bob Brookmeyer Quintet: Complete Studio Recordings” Lone Hill Jazz LHJ 10199)
Recorded 1966, New York City

Clark Terry – trumpet, flugelhorn; Bob Brookmeyer – valve trombone; Hank Jones – piano; Bob Cranshaw – bass; Dave Bailey – drums.


 

mother called him bill

Boo Dah (CD: “…And his Mother called him Bill” RCA 6287)

Recorded 28 August 1967, New York City

Cootie Williams, Cat Anderson, Herbie Jones, Mercer Ellington – trumpets; Clark Terry – flugelhorn; Lawrence Brown, Buster Cooper – trombones; Chuck Connors – bass trombone; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Aaron Bell – bass; Steve Little – drums.


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Diminuendo in Blue and Crescendo in Blue (Podcast #17-002)

 

“Nineteen fifty-six was an important year. The performance of Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue (originally written in 1937) at the Newport Jazz Festival, with an epic ride by Paul Gonsalves on tenor saxophone, brought us renewed attention and the cover of Time magazine. It was another of those major intersections in my career…

Paul Gonsalves, Jimmy Woode, and Sam Woodyard lifted that stone-cold audience up to a fiery, frenzied, screeching, dancing climax that was never to be forgotten. One lovely society matron broke through her veneer of discretion, and jumped her thing for all twenty-seven choruses, adding a cherry and whipped cream topping to our sundae morning.” – Duke Ellington, Music Is My Mistress

Transcription of Ray Nance’s trumpet solo on this version of Take the “A” Train by Jeff Helgesen



Diminuendo – Instruction in music notation meaning to get softer

Crescendo – Instruction in music notation meaning to get louder



Paul Gonsalves in action at the 1956 Newport Jazz Festival:

5_-GONSALVES-NEWPORT-19561



The first page of the score for “Diminuendo in Blue” in Ellington’s own hand:

dim1



An excellent analysis of these two pieces can by found on Ethan Iverson’s blog “Do the Math,” written by guest writer Darcy James Argue

For example, he provides a form breakdown of “Diminuendo:”

[A] CHORUS 1: Blues in Eb (12 bars)

[B] CHORUS 2: Blues in Eb (10 bars)

[C] FALSE START+INTERLUDE: FALSE START (Eb) begins same as CHORUS 2 (4 bars) then INTERLUDE on VII pedal (2 bars)

[D] CHORUS 3: Blues in G (12 bars)

[E] CHORUS 4: Blues in G (12 bars)

[F] CHORUS 5: Blues in C (12 bars)

[G] CHORUS 6: Blues in F minor (12 bars)

[H] CHORUS 7: Blues in Db (12 bars)

[I] CHORUS 8: Blues in Db (12 bars)

[J] CHORUS 9: Blues in Db (12 bars)

[K] CHORUS 10: Blues in Db (12 bars)

[L] “STAGE FADE” CODA: Db7#9 vamp (6 bars)



The near riot at the 1956 Newport Jazz Festival resulted in Duke Ellington landing on the cover of Time Magazine:

1101560820_400



Backstory In Blue, Ellington at Newport ’56, by John Fass Morton (Rutgers University Press)

backstory in blue



A 1958 performance of Diminuendo In Blue and Crescendo In Blue from a Netherlands concert:



More from the same concert can be found on the DVD, Duke Ellington Live in ’58 from Jazz Icons 2.119001

jazz icons dvd



Eventually, Crescendo In Blue was dropped and replaced with Blow by Blow:



The recordings heard on this podcast episode:



EllingtonAtNewport

Take the “A” Train (CD: “Ellington at Newport 1956 (Complete)” Columbia Legacy C2K 64932)

Recorded 07 July, 1956 Live at The Newport Jazz Festival Newport, RI

Cat Anderson, Clark Terry, Willie Cook – trumpet; Ray Nance – cornet; Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, John Sanders – trombone; Johnny Hodges, Russell Procope, Paul Gonsalves, Jimmy Hamilton, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Jimmy Woode – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.

 




elling_duke_complete1_101b

Diminuendo In Blue/Crescendo In Blue (CD: “The Complete 1932-1940 Brunswick, Columbia, Master Recordings of Duke Ellington and his Famous Orchestra,” Mosaic Records #248)

Recorded 20 September 1937, New York City

Arthur Whetsel, Cootie Williams, Freddie Jenkins – trumpets; Rex Stewart – cornet , Lawrence Brown, Joe Nanton, Juan Tizol – trombones; Johnny Hodges, Otto Hardwicke, Barney Bigard, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Fred Guy – guitar; Billy Taylor – bass; Sonny Greer – drums.

Diminuendo In Blue/Crescendo In Blue can also be found on The Essential Duke Ellington (Columbia Legacy)

ess ellington



ellington hollywd bowl

Diminuendo In Blue / Transbluecency / Crescendo In Blue (LP: “The Hollywood Bowl Concert” Unique Jazz UJ-001)

Recorded 31 August 1947 Live at the Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles

Shelton Hemphill, Dud Bascomb, Francis Williams, Harold Baker – trumpets; Ray Nance – trumpet, violin; Lawrence Brown, Claude Jones, Tyree Glenn – trombones; Jimmy Hamilton, Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges, Al Sears, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Fred Guy – guitar; Oscar Pettiford – bass; Sonny Greer – drums; Kay Davis – vocal. 


EllingtonAtNewport

Diminuendo In Blue and Crescendo In Blue (CD: “Ellington at Newport 1956 (Complete)” Columbia Legacy C2K 64932)

Recorded 07 July, 1956 Live at The Newport Jazz Festival Newport, RI

Cat Anderson, Clark Terry, Willie Cook – trumpet; Ray Nance – cornet; Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, John Sanders – trombone; Johnny Hodges, Russell Procope, Paul Gonsalves, Jimmy Hamilton, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Jimmy Woode – bass; Sam Woodyard – drums.



 David Murray Big Band

Paul Gonsalves (CD: “David Murray Big Band, Conducted by Lawrence “Butch” Morris” Disk Union DIW 851)

Recorded 05 March, 1991 in New York City

Hugh Ragin, Rasul Saddik, Graham Haynes, James Zollar – trumpets; Craig Harris, Frank Lacy – trombones; Vincent Chancey – french horn; James Spaulding, John Purcell, Patience Higgins, Don Byron, David Murray – saxes; Sonelius Smith – piano, Fred Hopkins – bass, Tani Tabbal – drums, Joel



0000120517

It’s Something You Ought To Know (Paul Gonsalves – “Ellingtonia Moods and Blues,” RCA Victor / RCA63562)

Recorded 29 February 1960, New York City

Paul Gonsalves- tenor sax; Johnny Hodges – alto sax; Ray Nance – cornet; Mitchell “Booty” Wood – trombone; Jimmy Jones – piano; Al Hall – bass; Oliver Jackson – drums.


 

 

 

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Introduction (Podcast #17-001)

 

“Jazz is many things to many people. To me, it has been a banner under which I have written and played most of life, almost all the way around the world.” – Duke Ellington, Music Is My Mistress

This blog, Ellington Reflections,  is the accompaniment to my bi-weekly podcast of the same name. The Ellington Reflections podcast is available for FREE on iTunes and Stitcher. Join me as I highlight different facets of the long and distinguished career of Edward Kennedy “Duke” Ellington (1899-1974). We’ll do this through his compositions, arrangements and recordings. We’ll also dive into the contributions of his sideman and other artists. There will no shortage of places to go!

Referenced in the first episode:

Transcription and analysis of Duke Ellington’s solo on The Clothed Woman, by Los Angeles based pianist Scott Healy.



Recordings heard during this podcast episode:



MI0001975791

Take the “A” Train (CD: “Duke Ellington and His Famous Orchestra 1941: The Complete Standard Transcriptions,” Soundies SCD4107)

Recorded 15 January 1941, Los Angeles

Wallace Jones, Ray Nance –trumpets; Rex Stewart – cornet; Lawrence Brown, Juan Tizol, Joe “Tricky Sam” Nanton – trombones; Otto Hardwicke, Johnny Hodges, Ben Webster, Barney Bigard, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Fred Guy – guitar; Jimmie Blanton – bass; Sonny Greer – drums.


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Portrait of Bert Williams (CD: “The Webster Blanton Band,” Bluebird 74321131812)

Recorded 28 May, 1940 Chicago

Wallace Jones, Cootie Williams, Rex Stewart – trumpets; Lawrence Brown, Joe Nanton, Juan Tizol – trombones; Barney Bigard, Johnny Hodges,  Otto Hardwicke, Ben Webster, Harry Carney -reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Fred Guy – guitar; Jimmie Blanton – bass; Sonny Greer – drums.


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The Clothed Woman (CD: “The Complete Duke Ellington, Vol. 2 (1947-1952),” Sony Music Distribution COL4629862)

Recorded 27 December, 1947 New York City

Al Killian, Harold Baker – trumpets; Lawrence Brown – trombone; Jimmy Hamilton, Johnny Hodges, Al Sears, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Junior Raglin – bass; Sonny Greer – drums.


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(I’m Just Wild About) Animal Crackers (CD: 1924-1926: Birth of a Band, Vol. 1 EPM #HS151042)

Recorded 21 June, 1926 New York City

Bubber Miley, Charlie Johnson – trumpets; Joe Nanton – trombone; Harvey Boone, Prince Robinson, Otto Hardwicke – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Fred Guy – banjo; Mack Shaw – bass; Sonny Greer – drums.


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Thanks for the Beautiful Land on the Delta (CD: “New Orleans Suite,” Warner Bros. 7411644)

Recorded 27 April, 1970 New York City

Cootie Williams, Al Rubin, Mercer Ellington, Fred Stone – trumpets; Booty Wood, Julian Priester, Malcolm Taylor – trombones; Russell Procope, Norris Turney, Johnny Hodges, Harold Ashby, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Joe Benjamin – bass; Rufus Jones – drums.


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Thanks for the Beautiful Land on the Delta (CD: “Never Before Released Recordings (1965-1972),” Music Masters 5041-2-C)

Recorded 23 July, 1970 Milan

Cootie Williams, Cat Anderson, Mercer Ellington, Fred Stone, Nelson Williams – trumpets; Booty Wood, Chuck Connors, Malcolm Taylor – trombones; Russell Procope, Norris Turney, Harold Ashby, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney – reeds; Duke Ellington – piano; Joe Benjamin – bass; Rufus Jones – drums.


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Thanks for the Beautiful Land on the Delta (Stefon Harris, “African Tarantella: Dances with Duke” – Blue Note 41090)

Released 2006

Personnel: Stefon Harris – vibraphone, marimba; Xavier Davis – piano; Derrick Hodge – bass; Terreon Gully – drums; Anne Drummond – flute; Greg Tardy – clarinet; Steve Turre – trombone; Junah Chung – viola; Louise Dubin – cello.


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It’s Something You Ought To Know (Paul Gonsalves – “Ellingtonia Moods and Blues,” RCA Victor / RCA 63562)

Recorded 29 February 1960 in New York City

Paul Gonsalves- tenor sax; Johnny Hodges – alto sax; Ray Nance – cornet; Mitchell “Booty” Wood – trombone; Jimmy Jones – piano; Al Hall – bass; Oliver Jackson – drums.

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