« Reminder | Main | playtime »

Starting my morning with a swing 2012

Duke Ellington's orchestra in 1959 in Germany with Shakespearean Sonnet excerpts:

That was tweeted in honor of the anniversary of Duke Ellington's birth, 4/29/12. Thanks to a reminder from my first cousin once removed or something like that Rick, who added these great notes and recommended two more videos.

"Selections from Such Sweet Thunder" - from German television: concert on 2/7/1959 in Germany.
 Such Sweet Thunder was a 12-part suite that Ellington wrote based on the work of Shakespeare (released in 1957). Here the band plays the first part ("Such Sweet Thunder" - referencing Othello; solo by Ray Nance trumpet) and the third part ("Sonnet to Hank Cinq" -- referencing Henry V; this is a blues in a boogie-woogie pattern with solo by Britt Woodman trombone; by the way, it has been said that the number of syllables in a Shakespearean sonnet are equal to the number of notes in an Ellington sonnet). The band plays the first piece faster than on the album.

"Isfahan" from The Far East Suite - from American TV show in 1965; featuring Johnny Hodges on alto saxophone (and the entire wonderful sax section).
The Far East Suite is a 9-composition suite recorded in 1966 (so it was recorded after this live TV event). Johnny Hodges was one of the greatest sax players ever -- deeply influenced by Sidney Bechet and Coleman Hawkins but he turned their emotionalism into a pure bell-like tone on the alto sax.

"Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue":
Originally these were two pieces composed in 1937 -- "Diminuendo in Blue" and "Crescendo in Blue" -- then brought together as one work: "Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue." The tenor sax player who solos -- Paul Gonsalves (yes, that's the correct spelling) -- began playing the solo in 1951. The solo actually occurs BETWEEN the two pieces. In 1956 at the Newport Jazz Festival Gonsalves stunned the jazz world with his legendary 26-chorus solo on this piece, revealing him to be a major player of the instrument. It was said he almost caused a riot because of the frenzy of the audience. He continued doing this solo for years with the band. I don't know when this version was filmed -- probably in the 1960s.


Hooray for relatives who send you things like this with which to start your day!

Posted on April 26, 2012 at 09:48 AM in linky goodness, music | Permalink


« Reminder | Main | playtime »

Blog (noun) A weblog or similar brief journal usually containing links and commentary thereon. Term coined by Peter Merholz.

Visit Typepad or Blogger to start your own. (I began with hand coding, then switched to Blogger when it first became available, then to Movable Type when I wanted more control over my weblog and to have it hosted at a place of my choosing (Hurricane Electric). Since 06/2003 I've used Typepad, a hosted service built by the same folks who made Movable Type, which I love because I don't have to maintain the underlying system).

You may write to Dinah @ this domain.

Except where otherwise noted all content is copyright 1965-2018 Dinah Sanders. Please do not repost my writing or other creations elsewhere. Instead, copy a tiny bit and link to the rest. Thanks! Images are copyright of their original creators. MetaGrrrl logo and photos by Dinah are copyright 1965-2018 Dinah Sanders. Inkspot Books and the Inkspot logo have been Service Marks of Dinah Sanders since 1993.