DR Ellington Broadcasts 48
Broadcast 48 took place on 4 April 1992. This time it was produced and presented by Bjarne Busk
It is the the first “goodie” in September 2022 and is available in the ”Goodies” section of the website.
Once again, the program is a broadcast of an (almost) full concert. This time, it is the appearance of Duke Ellington and His Orchestra together with the Cleveland Pops Orchestra (aka Cleveland Summer Orchestra at the Summer Pop Concerts in Cleveland, Ohio on 25 July 1956.
However, Busk starts with an excerpt from an interview of Ellington by Ted Cassidy in Januari 1958 about his symphonic works
As Busk will confirm in the broadcast, the program had three parts: First, the combined Cleveland Pops Orchestra and the Duke Ellington Orchestra played New World A-Comin’ in an arrangement by Luther Henderson. They were conducted by Louis Lane, the musical director of the Pops Orchestra and Ellington was of course the piano soloist.
Then the combined orchestras performed Night Creature, also in an arrangement by Luther Henderson. This time, Ellington was the conducter.
After a refreshing break, Ellington and His Orchestra took over the stage for a short concert, which begun with Skin Deep, followed by a full Medley and ending with Jam With Sam and V.I.P. Boogie. In the broadcast, only I Got It Bad/It Don’t Mean A Thing (nc) from the Medley and VIP Boogie followed by Jam With Sam is played.
As an extra goodie, we give our readers Skin Deep and the full Medley here.
DESScafé 12 September 2022
DESScafé is back after having been closed for renovation since May.
This time, the meeting was in English and the topic The Young Ben Webster 1932-1939. The music to enjoy and discuss had been selected by Thomas Erikson and myself. It had been chosen to demonstrate Webster’s stylistic development during these formative years.
During this early period, he played in Blanche Calloways’ Her Joy Boys in the spring of 1931 Then joined Bennie Moten’s Kansas City Orchestra in the winter 1931/1932 and stayed with it until Christmas time in 1932.
In January 1933, Webster was engaged by Andy Kirk and His Twelve Clouds, where he met Mary Lou Williams. who meant a lot for his early development.
In March 1934, Lester Young moved from Count Basie band to join Fletcher Henderson’s. However, it was a short stay for Young. A few months later Henderson made a deal with Andy Kirk to exchange Young for Webster and in mid-July Webster started with Henderson. But it was a short stay. In early November the Henderson orchestra disbanded.
Webster was then recruited by Benny Carter but the band had a short life. However, several members of the band, Webster included, was recruited by the singer and entertainer Willie Bryant in January 1935 and Webster stayed with him until August 1935.
During the period with Bryant, Webster recorded not only with him but also with small groups under Bob Howard’s and Teddy Wilson’s name.
After he left Bryant, Webster played two-three weeks with Duke Ellington substituting for Barney Bigard. He participated in a recording session on this occasion and then joined Cab Calloway in September 1935. Webster stayed with Calloway for almost two years.
During the period with Calloway, Webster participate in many small group recordings under Teddy Wilson’s, Mildred Bailey’s and Billie Holiday’s name.
He moved back to Fletcher Henderson in July 1937, where he took over after Chu Berry. In Maj 1938 he abruptly leaves Henderson. Next Webster works for a short period with Stuff Smith’s small group at the Onyx Club on 52nd Street in New York and then with Roy Eldrige’s small band.
In the spring of 1939, Teddy Wilson left Benny Goodman to start a big band and he recruited Webster for the sax section. He spent ten months with the Wilson orchestra before he was invited on 21 January, 1940 to join Duke Ellington.
This is the framework for the 12 September DESScafé.
The Spotify playlist have three songs which were not played played during the meeting. They are: Without That Gal (Blanche Calloway and Her Joy Boys), Rug Cutter’s Swing (Fletcher Henderson and His Orchestra) and Truckin’ (Duke Ellington and His Orchestra). I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm and The Man I Love with Teddy Wilson and His Orchestra are unfortunately not available on Spotify. and are not included in the playlist.
A Swedish text version of this article together with the video is available at https://ellington.se/desscafe/desscafe-12-september-2022/
Author: Ulf Lundin
Ellington News-Nyheter 2022-3 (more)
DESScafé is a virtual meeting place for DESS members andf others to meet and discuss Duke Ellington’s music and musicians.
It takes place on ZOOM. Each meeting has a theme and two-three presenters/animators select and introduce the music linked to it. The meetings last about one hour and a half.
Desscafé opened the first time in October 2020 and since then the café visitors have discussed and listened to interpretations of Ellington music by many Ellingtonians.
So far this year, the themes in the DESScafé has been Ellingtonians in small groups play Ellington in the 1960’s (January), Shorty Baker (February), Essentially Ellington Competion (March), Perdido (April) and Ellington’s last English tours (May).
The next DESScafé will take place on 12 september and will for the first time be in English. The theme is The Young Ben Webster 1932-1939 and the idea is to discuss his stylistic development. Thomas Erikson and myself will be the presenters/animators.
The Zoom link for the meeting is available at https://ellington.se/desscafe/.
As reported in Ellington News 2022-2, at the end of May, DESUK’s Uptown Lockdown got a new and interesting format with Brian Priestley interviewing a guest. He does it once a month and the interviews are uploaded to the Uptown Lockdown channel on YouTube.
The first one was with the musician, jazz historian and author of many books on jazz, Alyn Shipton. Brian Priestley’s Ellington-oriented conversation with him is available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2LJ5zYBFAUQ
The next one was with bassist Dave Green, who “enthused about Ellington, Jimmie Blanton and playing frequently with Ben Webster. The interview can be seen and heard at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vbRBTGcNnoc
The third interview was with the saxophonist, clarinettist and Ellington aficionado Alan Barnes. It can be found at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=70efqBYML34
Priestley’s latest interview was with trumpeter and arranger Guy Barker. “Learn all about his early interest in Rex Stewart and Cootie Williams and about his mentoring by Clark Terry as well as hearing some great Ellington/Strayhorn music, says Brian. Here is the link to the interview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3fuaHwEKBdA&t=3s
The Ellington Effect
Last week, I learned from David Bergerthe the first volume in this ambitious and amazing project is still a couple of years away. Pity but we have to respect that it is a complicated project for which it is not easy to find a publisher.
Until we have the books, there are the monthly Ellington Effect workshops.
They are monthly ZOOM meetings where David “dives into a single composition each time analyzing it musically line by line and answering questionsfrom the attendees”. They last for more than two hours and sometimes they are hard to follow for a “non-expert”. But since one has to have a subscription to attend the works, one can listen to them over again and discover more aspect each time.
So far there have been 18 workshops. The most recent one was about Blasck Beauty and David gave a fascinating presentation. The next one, which will be about Harlem Speaks, takes place on 25 September.
The full list of workshops are at https://courses.suchsweetthundermusic.com/products/home.
Canada Lee broadcast
Thank you to Brian Koller and Charlie Dyson for telling us that the full half-hour version of the Canada Lee from 9 June, 1941 is available on the Internet.
There is one on YouTube as part of a 3 hours and 42 minutes of a collage of radio programs from 9 June 1941 in the World War Two Old Time Radio channel. The Canada Lee broadcast is towards the end of the program. The full program is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5_4_Z0YDfU.
Another one is available on Past Daily and the article there has both the radio program and an extensive article about Canada Lee and the background to the program. It was apparently a celebration of the Broadway opening for the Charles Wright play Native Son, in which Canada Lee had the “starring role”.
The article is at https://pastdaily.com/2018/11/
The Ellington aspects of the broadcast is that “Duke, Jeffries and Ivie Anderson are mentioned at the start of it. Ellington has a scripted dialogue with Eddie “Rochester” Anderson, then accompanies Jeffries on “Brown-Skin Gal”. It seems that Ellington intended to accompany Ivie Anderson on “Chocolate Shake” but she is a no-show, which obligates Ellington to turn the number into a piano solo” (quote from Brian Koller).
Recently, a video version of the interview was put on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZC4Xn9VMT4
Radio Jazz Copenhagen
The website has written about this radio station a couple of times. It is an amazing one, which broadcasts 24/24 hours a day and have many thematic interesting broadcasts.
One of them is Lördagskonserten (the Saturday Concert) which often features our friend and DESS member Bjarne Busk.
For the moment, the theme is recordings from jazz clubs in New York and the program on 17 September had recordings by Count Basie at Café Society in 1941.
Radio Jazz has also a special program about Ellington. It is called The Wonderful World of Duke Ellington and brings together the Ellington expert Henrik Wolsgaard-Iversen and two of his friends to play and talk about Ellington music. The latest episode was n:o 151 in the series and others will soon follow.
Like Lördagskonserten, the most recent The Wonderful World of Duke Ellington programs are available in the blog on the website.
But there is much more in the blog like some episodes of series on Ben Webster and the four program about the Swedish singer Nannie Porres.
Unfortunately, everything on Radio Jazz is broadcasted in Danish so it can be enjoyed only by those who understand this language.
Hot Jazz Saturday Night
In his program on 13 August, Rob Bamberger gave the listeners two hours of music from the period when he had left Ellington. He gave us a good and varied selection and often came back to Con Chapman’s book on Hodges, Rabbit’s Blues.
For a limited period, the program will be available to DESS member in the restricted Rob Bamberger area on the website https://ellington.se/ellington-arkivet/radioprogram/rob-bamberger/. The password is the same as for other restricted areas.
Ellington News-Nyheter 2022-3
DESS Bulletin 2022-3
DESS members got the third issue of the Bulletin by postal mail or email in the beginning of August but because of the summer break, the website has not been able to report about it until now.
It is another issue with a lot of good and informative reading.
Bo Haufman really deserves to be thanked for all his work on the Bulletins. He has to come up with ideas to articles, finding writers for them or write them himself, work with the layout guy and finally put address labels and stamps on the envelops that will carry the new Bulletin to the DESS members.
This time, the lead article is about Jimmy Woode, Ellington’s bass player from 1955 to 1960 and important factor in the resurrection of the Ellington band in the mid 1950’s.
It is an interesting and well researched article. It starts with Woode’s father Jimmy Woode Sr, who spent most of his life in Sweden. He was a pianist and came to Sweden in 1947 with a band called The Harlem Madcaps for a short tour. When it ended, he and his wife decided to remain in Sweden and Woode Sr did so for the rest of his life. Woode was particularly active in the Swedish jazz life during the 1950s and was participating in many recordings both then and later.
Bo also tells us that Jimmy Woode Jr aimed to be a pianist as his father but switched to bass as a late teenager. He practiced hard and was apparently so good that George Wein in c. 1953 recruited him as bass chair in the house band at Storyville in Boston and Woode also played “occasionally” at the Hi-Hat there.
One can hear Woode in many recordings from the two clubs but his first recording was made in Panama and on 9 August, 1951, he participated in a quintet recording in Los Angeles for Clef. The group also included Bill Harris, Flip Phiips and Lou Levy so Woode must have been well connected.
On 2 January, 1955, Woode joined the Duke Ellington band as a replacement for Wendell Marshall. He was to stay for “five years, four months, two weeks and two days.
Bo writes extensively about Woode’s time with Ellington and the music he discusses can be heard in a playlist on Spotify.
Woode left the Ellington orchestra in April 1960. Shortly thereafter. he moved to Sweden where he stayed for about 3 years participating in many record sessions and playing at dance restaurants with his father.
Woode must also have stayed in contact with American jazz musicians like Kenny Clarke living in Paris and other places in Europe. On 22 April 1961, he played at l’Olympia with a small group led by George Wein.
However, more important was that he participated in a recording by a Kenny Clarke/Francy Boland group for Blue Note in Cologne on 18-19 May, 1961. The recording was issued as The Golden Eight and was much acclaimed when it was issued. It was the beginning of what was to become the Kenny Clark/Francy Boland Big Band but this name was used the first time in 1963 and by that time is was a real big band.
Woode moved to continental Europe in 1963 and remained there until his return to the U.S.A. in 2001. The core of his work in Europe was the touring and recording with the Clark/Boland band until it was disbanded in 1973. But he continued to be in demand and appeared at jazz festivals and clubs in different configuration. It seems that he in 1973-1974 also was a member of the ORF big band in Vienna.
Woode made his last recording in February 2005, It took place in Hannover even if he by that time lived in the U.S.A. He died two months later.
His discography of the years in Europe is impressive and has much good listening to offer. Explore it!
Personally, I am a big fan of the Kenny Clark/Francy Boland Big Band, in which Woode was an inportant component and also of the recordings by smaller groups from the band like the trio albums Out of the Background and Francy Boland Trio.
Bo’s full article gives more details on what I have said here and covers also other subjects. Read it!
The usual mini portrait of an Ellington artist is this time about the singer Dolores Parker – The Wildest Gal in Town as Bo headline the article about here. She was with the Ellington band for only six months from 27 August 1947 to February 1948. During this period, she took part in seven recording sessions and in them she revealed herself “as a lady who could sing” according to Eddie Lambert.
She started her jazz vocalist career in Fletcher Henderson’s orchestra in November 1941. She stayed with Henderson until 1945 and then joined Earl Hines’ orchestra together with her husband in 1946 after having given birth to a daughter.
She got her job with the Ellington orchestra through an audition. Billy Strayhorn was the judge of the panel and proposed her to Ellington after having heard her sing Lush Life.
The article in Bo’s long series about Ellington compositions is about Lady of the Lavender Mist. He gives a poetic description of the song. “When he composed the song, Duke Ellington probably thought of a beautiful woman who can be seen in a blue-violet lavender mist.” Lady of the Lavender Mist was originally meant to be the first movement in a longer work to be called The French Suite.
It was recorded 14 August 1947 for Columbia with Jimmy Hamilton and Lawrence Brown as main soloist. It stayed in the repertoire in 1948 and was included in the program of the concert at Carnegie Hall on 13 November 1948. It was also played in the concert at Cornell University on 10 December 1948. Thereafter, the only entry of it in NDESOR is a dance date in March 1952.
The new Bulletin also have some other articles.
Bo Haufman has written a very good summary of the Duke Ellington Meeting 2022. It really tells what happened during the four days of this virtual conference.
There are also a reprint of an article that pianist Bobby Short wroye about his memories of Duke Ellington, reviews of recent new Ellington CDs and a remembrance of the Swedish pianist Nils Lindberg.
During the summer, Storyville Records issued a CD with Clark Terry and His Big Bad Band in Holland in 1979.
It is a studio recording from 6 September 1979 made for later radio broadcast. It is not known if the recording was broadcasted and if so when.
The songs on the CD are: A Toi; Rabdi; On the Trail; Don’t Speak Now; Blues All Day, Blues All Night; Carney; Rock Skippin’ at the Blue Note; Just Squeeze Me; Jeep’s Blues; Shell Game; Mumbles; Una Mas and Take the “A” Train.
In this version of the Big Bad Band, the only Ellingtonians besides Terry are Chuck Connors and Buster Cooper. The rest of the band is a talented group of younger musicians.
Here is Carney from the CD.
Almost two month before or 15 July to be exact, Terry and his Big Bad Band performed at the North Sea Jazz Festival. It played the same songs as in the studio recording but in a slightly different order.
Here is Jimmy Heath’s arrangement of Una Mas from this occasion.
It is quite likely that the band appeared at other jazz festivals in July and August but no details are known. If someone has information about this, please contact the web editor.
Duke Ellington Society
I end this article with the letter that the Board of the Duke Ellington Society of Southern California (DES) has sent to its members and other Ellington fans recently. “It is good news that it is still among us”, the Chairman of DESS, Bo Haufman, said in a mail to DESS’ members and we all hope that it will stay that way!