Den här gången kom de trogna kafébesökarna till kaféet för att höra om och lyssna till musik spelad av Cat Anderson. Programmet hade satts samman av Leif Jönsson – stor kännare av Katten – Thomas Erikson och Bo Hansson.
Det hade ett starkt fokus på 1950-talet och Anderson som solist i Ellingtonorkestern eller eller eget sammansatt band. Men programmet innehöll också nummer från tidigare och senare perioder.
It is the last issue for 2021 and Bo Haufman has once again put together a lot of interesting reading about Ellington and those around him.
The cover story is this time about Bubber Miley.
In a six pages long article, Göran Wallén demonstrates his deep knowledge about Miley – “Duke’s Inspirer” – as he calls him.
The article is concentrated on Miley’s time before he joined the Washingtonians and after he forced out of the Ellington band but covers also Miley’s influence on and importance for Ellington’s “jungle” band and his stylistic development.
A part of the article also look into the famous January 16, 1929 recording session and recapitulate what the Swedish expert group on Miley’s recordings said about his participation in this session.
Another major and very interesting article is an interview with Fred Guy that the jazz and music journalist John McDonough published in Down Beat in 1969 and which is reprinted in the new Bulletin.
In the interview, Guy talks about how he come to work for Ellington, about the clubs where Ellington played, how he persuaded Harry Carney’s mother to allow him to join the band and his memories from the band. He also openenly express his dislike for Irving Mills.
In another interesting article, DESS board member Thomas Harne teaches the Bulletin readers about the difference between a cornet and a trumpet and the difference in sound between them.
There are also reviews of new Ellington records in the last issue for 2021 and two shorter drum related articles by Bo Haufman – The double bass drum concept and Duke’s drummer problems in 1966.
It is amazing to see how aliveEllington still is. Three fresh CDs with Ellington music have been issued so far this year. In addition, a book on the role of the piano in the Ellington orchestra has also been published and more books are on their way.
The book is written by the French pianist, composer, arranger and orchestra leader Leîla Olivesi. It is dedicated to Claude Carrièr and published by IREMUS – Institut de recherch en musicologie. The book is available for download (no cost) from La Maison du Duke website (http://www.maison-du-duke.com/recherche-et-publications). The book is in French. Those, who cannot read this wonderful language, can hear Leïla Olivesi’s presentation on the topic at the Ellington 2021 Meeting in English (https://ellington.se/2021/05/20/ellington-2021-leila-olivesi).
In his presentation at the Ellington 2021 Meeting, Laurent Mignard gave some glimps of his new Ellington project Duke Ladies.
It is a very creative and ambitious project to give new perspectives on Duke Ellington’s music and Mignard is using his talent as arranger, his Duke Orchestra and seven female guest artists – the Duke Ladies – to achieve this.
The first result is demonstrated in the CD released last week.
It comes with a very good liner notes with detailed information about the 13 tracks.
More information is available at the links below. Together they give the song and performer list of the CD, a very nice video teaser, a short video presentation of Duke Ladies and text presentation of the project in English.
Volume 2 will be released next year and there will be a release concert with the Duke Orchestra and some of the Duke Ladies at the Chatelet concert venue on May 12 2022.
The easiest way is to buy the CD from Laurent Mignard’s website (https://www.laurent-mignard.com/shop) but it is also available at Amazon.fr and the website of the production company Just A Trace (https://www.juste-une-trace.com/en/store)
Duke Ellington in Berlin 1959
In the autumn of 1959, Duke Ellington came back to Europe for a more extensive tour than in 1958. It started in The Netherlands on September 18 and ended in Germany on October 20. Between those dates, Ellington played concerts in The Netherlands, France, Sweden, Denmark, Germany and one in each of Switzerland and Austria.
At the end of this summer, Storyville released a CD with Ellington’s concert at Sportpalatset in Berlin on October 4, 1959.
The concert has been available commercially before on vinyl as well as CD.
The English label Swing House published two LPs with most of the concert in 1978 (SWH 4) and 1982 (SWH 28). Some of the material on the LPs appeared on a Sound of Yester Year CD in 1986 and the CD The Incomparable Duke Ellington issued in 1987 has about half of the Swing House material but also two unissued songs from the concert – Newport Up and I Let A Song Go Out of My Heart/Don’t Get Around Much Anymore.
The new Storyville CD is a big improvement compared to what has been available before. The sound is much better and the music is presented in chronological order. Bjarne Busk as producer and Jorgen Vad as sound engineer are responsible for this
With the CD comes also extensive and very informative liner notes by Dan Morgenstern with detailed comments on the music.
Another CD by Storyville highly recommended !
According to NDESOR, Happy Anatomy, All of Me, Just Sqeeze Me/It Don’t Mean A Thing and Happy Reunion were played at the concert but they are not on the CD (and not on other issues either). Perhaps someone has got those tracks and can let the DESS website publish them as goodies.
The concert in Berlin was not the only one recorded during the tour.
The two concerts at Salle Pleyel on September 20 were recorded as well and most of the material has been issued on the Affinity and Sarpe Top Jazz labels.
Also recordings of the two concerts in Stockholm on September 26 exists and have been circulating among collectors for a long time.
To make them more widely available, the DESS website offered them as “goodies” to DESS members in November 2019. Go to https://ellington.se/2019/11/12/stockholm-26-september-1959-forsta-forestallningen and https://ellington.se/2019/11/15/stockholm-26-september-1959-andra-forestallningen to read the articles and download the concerts (DESS members only).
Ellington gave his first concerts in Sweden in Malmö on September 23. It was the author’s first live encounter with the Maestro and my body began shaking when the orchestra intoned Take The “A” Train and Ellington strolled onto the stage.
The concert in Zurich on October 9 was televised and a rather poor copy of the telecast is available on YouTube.
There is also a recording of the concert in Munich on October 11 but to the knowledge of the author it has not been released in any form.
Johnny Hodges in Paris 18 February 1961
Just before the summer, the French record company Frémaux et associés added another Ellington-related gem to its very impressive catalog. It is a recording of a concert by Johnny Hodges and the Duke Ellington Giants at Olympia in Paris March 18, 1961.
The music is typical Ellington repertoire except for a new song – Blues for Madeleine – dedicated to Madeleine Gautier, Hugues Panassié’s collaborator and wife.
Only one song in the concert – Blue Moon – is not included in the CD.
The sound is excellent. The concert was recorded by Europe 1 and the producers have had access to the master tapes. Thank you George Debroe for this information.
The concert was part of a 14 day European tour organised by Norman Granz taking advantage of the fact that members of Ellington orchestra were on vacation for a long period when Ellington and Billy Strayhorn were in Paris to work on the Paris Blues movie.
The Ellington Giants, who joined Hodges, were Lawrence Brown, Harry Carney, Ray Nance, Al Williams and Sam Woodyard.
Besides Paris, Hodges and his men gave concerts in Stockholm (March 14 or 15) and Helsinki (March 16).
The group also played concert(s) in Berlin at Sportpalatset but more research is needed to establish the exact date(s).
Some sources say that it was the last concert after the one in Paris. However, the Tom Lord jazz discography claims that there was also a concert in Scandinavia (Copenhagen?) on March 22. If this is correct, then the concert in Berlin could have taken place just after the Paris concert but followed by the Scandinavian one.
The website will come back to Hodges’ tour in another article next month.
The fall issue of the DESS Bulletin should have arrived in the mailbox of DESS members by now.
As usual, it provides a lot of good reading contributed by Bulletin editor and DESS President, Bo Haufman and others.
The cover artist in the fall issue is Django Reinhardt – A Gypsy with a Song.
In a six-page article Bo Haufman gives a detailed account of the contacts between Django and Duke Ellington but also of other contacts between him and other American jazz musicians like Louis Armstrong and Rex Stewart. In particular, Bo gives a detailed account of Reinhardt’s appearances with Ellington during his October-November 1946 visit to the U.S.A.
A highly recommended article!
Another contribution by Bo is a three-page article about Ellington’s many failed efforts to establish himself on Broadway and have a musical performed there.
For those who did not attend the Zoom-based Ellinton 2021 Meeting, Bo’s summary of the event is also good reading. All the presentations with the exception of three are also available to watch and listen to on the DESS website.
In the new issue, there is also an article by DESS-member Peter Lee about his favorite Johnny Hodges and a condensed version of an article by Mike Zirpolo on the Swing and Beyond website about Billy Strayhorn’s Clementine.
These major articles are supplemented by a lot of shorter ones like a reprint of an interview of Sonny Greer and tributes to Sven Tollin and Ted Hudson – two pillars in the Ellington community, who have left us.
The first DESS meeting since January 2020 is also announced in the Bulletin. It will take place on 13 September 2021 and starts with the Annual meeting. It is followed by Erik Persson talking about his view of Duke Ellington and musical entertainment by Jazz MaTazz.
Jack Chambers was also among the presenters on the fourth and last day of Ellington 2021.
He is currently in the early stages of working on another book on Ellington and had chosen to give the participants in Ellington 2021 a snapshot of one of the chapters in the forthcoming book.
His presentation focused particularily on Wild Bill Davis’ and Ron Collier’s work as arrangers for Ellington in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s.
Brian is a man full of knowledge about jazz and among other things about Duke Ellington. When he was asked to make a presentation to Ellington 2021, he thought a lot about it and finally said: “Yes, I like to do one and it will be about Duke Ellington’s Sound of Africa”.
But the title was developed into a multifaceted presentation, in which Brian in a very pedagogical way highlighted Ellington’s musical approach in the the five Ellington recordings he played in his presentation.
At the end, Brian said: .”Maybe you will listen more carefully to some of these things” and he certainly challenged wth his presentation to do so!
At one point in the presentation, Brian referred to an article in “an upcoming issue of Blue Light”. Since Ellington 2021, the issue has been published and all DESUK members can read “Keys to the Kingdom”. Brian says it is a “reseach in progress” and it has quite some links to his presentation.
Jan Bruér – Swedish jazz critic and writer, record producer and DESS member – was one of the speakers on the last day of Ellington 2021. Back in 1960’s, he did a long interview with Harry Carney in Stockholm with a particular focus on Otto Hardwick. The interview is the basis of Jan’s presentation. In it he focus on Hardwick’s hot side rather than the sweet one and tries to identify when Carney played his first baritone solo with Duke Ellington.
Michael Kilpatrick – baritone saxophonist and orchestra leader – was one of the speakers on the second day of Ellington 2021.
He is also a recognized transcriber of Duke Ellington’s and Billy Strayhorn’s music. For this work, he has spent long periods at the Smithsonian’s Ellington Archive, Washington D.C., to go through the boxes there with musical scores by the hands of Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn.
In conjunction with the cancelled Ellington 2020 Conference, Michael spent another 10 days in the Ellington Archive and returned home with more than 3000 pages of scores.
Together with his partner Sibelius – the music notation software – Michael has spent the last year to making sense of what he found in the Ellington Archive and in his presentation, Michael took the audience on a terrific exploration on how to turn fragments of Duke Ellington scores into a full musical piece.
After all the presentation on the second day when everybody was relaxing, Michael provided another “goodie” to the participants in the meeting – a short extract of Nobody’s Baby Now.
Loren Schoenberg – founder of and senior scholar at the National Jazz Museum in Harlem – provided the first presentation on the third day of Ellington 2021. He is also a pillar in the international Ellington community as well as in the Benny Goodman one and is a terrific expert on big band jazz.
He had hinted to the Ellington 2021 organizers that he might talk about something different than in the program but when he announced that he was going to talk about the Barney Bigard small group recordings in the 1940’s, everybody was happy. They realized that they were in for an interesting talk. And that was what Loren delivered!
For those interested in other presentations by Loren, the YouTube channel of The National Jazz Museum in Harlem is highly recommended as is his lectures at Jazz At Lincoln Center’s Swing University.
Laurent Mignard ended the third day with a sparkling multimedia presentation of his Duke Orchestra. He founded it in 2003 to bring Duke Ellington’s music to old and new audiences and he has done this in a succesful way.
Mignard’s formula for achieving this has been to bring together an extraordinary good orchestra with talented soloists of different generations, use his skill as arranger and transcriber to provide the orchestra with a solid modern Ellington repertoire and frame Ellington’s music in almost theatrical projects.
The presentation was very much about those projects and the Ellington 2021 audience could enjoy video clips from them, including one from a recording session for the upcoming Duke’s Ladies CD album.
Learn more about Laurent Mignard and Duke Orchestra at https://www.laurent-mignard.com/duke-orchestra/ and about himself at https://www.laurent-mignard.com/en/laurent-mignard-biography/.