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The DESS Bulletin – New Issue

The indefatigable editor of the DESS Bulletin, Bo Haufman, has produced a new issue. It is the 2019-2 one and it is on its way to the DESS members.

The trumpeter Harold Baker – nicknamed ”Shorty” – is the featured artist in the new issue.

Thomas Eriksson covers his life and career in a five page article. The focus is of course on his time in the Ellington band but the readers with also learn about his time with the big bands of Don Redman, Teddy Wilson and Andy Kirk before Baker joined Ellington in 1942. His time and marriage with Mary Lou Williams is also well covered as are his periods as freelancer.

A second Baker article in the new Bulletin is a reprint from Jazz Journal, in which Clark Terry tells Steven Voce about him. ”There was never a better trumpet player to come out of St. Louis than Harold ”Shorty Baker”, he says.

Another major article in the new Bulletin is about Al Sears. It is written by Nigel Haslewood, an Englishman living in Leicester, UK who runs the online Sadman Record shop.

It is the first part of an article, which was originally published in the IAJRC Journal. Like Thomas Eriksson’s article on Harold Baker, it is very well researched and very detailed. When the second part is also published, the DESS members should have a good monography on Al Sears.

This issue also have some shorter articles by Bo Haufman himself like one about The Women’s Duke Ellington and another on the Ellington-Strayhorn composition The Eighth Veil.

The DESS member Erling Torkelsson have also contributed to the new Bulletin with an article about Jerome Kern, George Gershwin and Duke Ellington.

 

 

 

Wolfram Knauer on BB&B

Wolfram Knauer, Director of the Jazzinstutut Darmstadt, did his first appearance at an Ellington Study Group Conference in Copenhagen in 1992.

He had chosen to talk about Simulated Improvisation in Black, Brown and Beige. The presentation built on an article Dr. Knauer had published in the journal The Black Perspective in Music in 1990.

In a 1986 article, André Hodier used the term ”simulated improvisation” to described an element in his compositions from the 1950s and Knauer considers that Ellington’s Black Brown and Beige is an early example of a comparable technique.

He gives several examples of this from the first part of the suite but starts his talk with some background on BB&B.

To help the audience to follow the presentation, Dr. Knauer had prepared a two-page handout, which is available here.

It is very good to have it at hand when listening to the talk.

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The Duke and The Tiger

Duke Ellington recorded Tiger Rag for the first time on January 8, 1929 for Brunswick. It was an extended version, which was issued on a 12 inch 78 (Brunswick 6510)

At the Ellington ’92 conference in Copenhagen, Dan Morgenstein – Director of the Institute of Jazz Studies at Rutgers University for more than 30 years – spoke about Ellington’s performances of Tiger Rag and how he used the Tiger Rag themes in many imagitative ways.

He had spoken on this topic already at the Ellington ’83 conference in Washington D.C. but only a very short excerpt of that presentation has been preserved.

Strayhorn-serie på Sveriges Radio (2)

Det andra programmet i Jan Bruérs serie om Billy Strayhorn har fokus på 50-och 60-talen. Det slutar med Strayhorns sista komposition Blood Count.

Dessförinnan låter Jan lyssnarna höra bl.a. Drawing Room Blues, Watch Your Cue, Strange Feeling, Star-Crossed Lovers, Grace Valse och Blue Bird of Delhi

Under sommaren planerar vi att låta DESS’ medlemmar lyssna till en annan Ellingtonserie av Jan Bruér medan de kopplar av i hängmattan. Serien heter Hertigens spelmän och som namnet säger handlar den om olika medlemmar av Ellingtons orkester.

Strayhorn-serie på Sveriges Radio (1)

Förra året publicerade webbplatsen Jan Bruérs och Lars Westins programserie på Sveriges Radio om Duke Ellington och hans musik. Alla tio programmen finns tillgängliga för DESS’ medlemmar här.

Idag presenterar vi det första av två program om Billy Strayhorn, som Jan Bruér ställt samman. Tyvärr saknas f.n. information om när programmet sändes men efterforskningarna fortsätter.

Det första programmet har naturligtvis fokus på Strayhorns tidiga samarbete med Ellington men ger också exempel när de sitter ner vid pianot tillsammans.

Musiken i program är bl.a. Something To Live For, Blues A-Poppin’, Flamingo, Chelsea Bridge, Passion Flower, Midriff och Lotus Blossom. Tyvärr är bandet med radioinspelningen skadat mot slutet av Midriff.

DESS-mötet 18 feb. 2019

Det blev en trevlig och intressant kväll för de DESS-medlemmar som hade sökt sig till Franska Skolan.

Den inleddes med Sällskapets årsmötet. Det sköttes med sedvanlig bravur av Håkan Skytt

Foto: Bo Haufman

Styrelsen fick ansvarsfrihet och Leif Jönsson, Bo Haufman, Claes Brodda och Peter Lee valdes om till styrelsen för en period av två år. Anders Asplund, Lars Björkman och Göran Wallén har ett år kvar på sina mandat.

Rune Sjögren stod för kvällens föredrag, som han kallade Jazzatmosfär.

Foto Bo Haufman

Foto Sonja Svensson

Han berättade om sitt liv liv med jazzen från ungdomsåren till långt upp i livet och flätade ihop sitt kåseri med 12 väl valda inspelningar från 20-, 30-, 40- och 50-talet. Publiken fick bl.a. höra Slave to the Blues (Ma Rainey), Dippermouth Blues (King Oliver), The Sheik of Araby (Benny Goodman), Oh, Lady be Good (Count Basie), The Things We Did Last Summer (Fats Navarro) och Black and Tan Fantasy (Duke Ellington).

Tack vare DESS’ allstäddes närvarande it-stjärna Göran Axelsson kan de DESS-medlemmar, som inte kunde vara på plats, höra eller se föredraget på sin dator. Det finns i avdelningen DESS-möten på webbplatsen i video-, ljud och textversioner Där kan man också höra alla låtar som Rune spelade.

Efter pausen med mingel och tugg var det så dags för kvällens konsert, som Davor Kajfes stod för. Och det blev verkligen en höjdpunkt.

Foto Bo Haufman

”Det var en upplevelse att höra honom”, sade Sonja och Conny Svensson efter konserten. Och många höll med.

För de, som var med på Ellington ’94 i Stockholm, framkallade konserten också minnet av Davor Kajfes’ framträdande på Konserthuset med John Lewis. Det var en stark upplevelse!

Den här gången bjöd Davor på en bred kavalkad av godbitar förknippade med Ellington och Billy Strayhorn som Take The ’A’ Train, In A Sentimental Mood, I Got It Bad, Satin Doll, Caravan, Lotus Blossom, Isfahan, C Jam Blues.

Han avslutade konserten med en hyllning till Alice Babs och publiken fick höra Come Sunday, Heaven och All Mighty God.

Ellington DR Broadcasts (34)

The second ”goodie” in February is program 34 in the Duke Ellington series broadcast by the Danish Radio in the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s. The broadcast is available in the ”Goodies” section of the website.

This program was broadcasted on October 13, 1985 and presented by Bjarne Busk.

It starts with a snapshot from Ted O’Reilly’s interview of Ellington in Toronto on March 17, 1970 in which Ellington talks about his stockpile of unreleased recording.

Next comes New Concerto For Cootie recorded on September 13, 1962. The day before Cootie Williams had rejoined the Ellington orchestra and recorded Ellington’s welcoming piece for him – Tutti For Cootie.

The broadcast then moves on to the February 1957 stockpile recording session, from which Busk let the listeners hear C-Jam Blues and In A Sentimental Mood with Paul Gonsalves soloing. He shares this role with Clark Terry in ”C Jam Blues”.

After this, Busk features in the program an Ellington’s medley of French songs recorded on February 27, 1962 – My Heart Sings, My Man and No Regrets.

The last two are Edit Piaf songs –  Mon Homme and No Je Ne Regret Rien – and the first one an early 1940’s song Ma Mie written by the team Henri Herpin and Jamblan and first recorded by Jean Sablon.

However, ”My Heart Sings” and ”No Regrets” included in the Midnight In Paris album are from the recording session June 26, 1962. (mer…)

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