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Smått och gott / Bits and Pieces Sep. 2021
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.
Smått och gott / Bits and Pieces
Ellington Study Group Conference May 25-27, 2018
Even if there is still no official announcement, it seems that the 25th Ellington Study Group Conference will take place in England or more precisely in Birmingham on May 25-27.
It is organized and hosted by the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire and the School of Media, Birmingham City University in association with Duke Ellington Society UK (DESUK).
The conference starts at 17 o’clock on May 27 and ends on 13 o’clock on May 29.
The programme includes two keynote presentations, six thematic panels with presentations and four concerts by the Birmingham Conservatoire’s Ellington Jazz Orchestra.
The keynote presentations will be given by Dr. Harvey Cohen, Senior Lecturer, Kings College London and Dr. Katherine Williams, Lecturer in Music, Plymouth College. Dr. Cohen is the author of “Duke Ellington’s America” and Dr. Williams is doing research for a new book on Duke Ellington.
The web editor has done some research on hotels in Birmingham not far from the site of the conference and the result can be found here.
In the beginning of January, Laurent Mignard and his Duke Orchestra presented a “spectacle musical” in Paris called Jazzy Poppins. The show is inspired by the musical Mary Poppins and Duke Ellington’s Reprise album “Duke Ellington Plays Mary Poppins”.
Another set of performances took place at the end of February and early March. Most likely, there will be even more.
Those, who do not live in Paris, can enjoy the show on CD. It can be ordered at the Laurant Mignard website http://www.laurent-mignard.com/jazzy-poppins-boutique/
On May 6 at 11 o’clock, the Duke Orchestra and the lead singer in the show, Sophie Kaufmann, will appear on the public radio station France Music (www. francemusique.fr) to perform a substantial part of the show.
In accordance with the agreement between the website and DESUK, issues 2015:4 and of Blue Light are now available to members of DESS in the Ellington article.
Especially interesting features in this issue is a report by DESUK’s late chairman Geoff Smith on the 2015 Ellington Study Group Conference in Portland, Oregon on Nov. 6-8, 2015, the first of two article by Matthew J. Cooper on Ellington as a pianist and a discussion between Roger Boyes and Geoff Smith on the Cambridge Companion to Duke Ellington published in 2015.
Smått och gott / Bits and Pieces
Nästa DESS-möte äger rum torsdagen den 7 december 2017. Fullständig kallelse finns i nästa nummer av Bulletinen.
Grundaren av skiv- och distributionsbolaget AdLib, Ivan Sundberg, kommer att bjuda på en musikalisk “Pytt-i-Panna à la Duke efter behag” och Stockholm Jazz Trio kommer att svara för den levande musiken.
Trion bestående av Daniel Tilling piano, Jan Adefelt bas och Jesper Kviberg trummor och den kommer att framföra något de kallar för History of Piano Trio Jazz med bl.a. musik av Duke Ellington och Billy Strayhorn.
David Palmquists oumbärliga webbplats “The Duke – Where and When” (TDWAW) (http://tdwaw.ca) har nu försetts med en tillägssida fokuserad på Ivie Anderson.
Den har utvecklats tillsammans med Steven Lasker och Ken Steiner och innehåller mycket information om Andersons karriär och liv. Rekommenderas på det varmaste. Länken till den är http://tdwaw.ellingtonweb.ca/IvieAnderson.html.
Laurent Mignard Duke Orchestra
Den 29 april 2017 gav orkestern gav en Ellington-konsert i den legendariska studio 104 i Maison de la radio i Paris. France Musique sände en inspelning av den i två delar den 23 och 24 september. Länken till dem är https://www.francemusique.fr/personne/laurent-mignard. Men en sammanklippning av de båda utsändningarna finns också i radioavdelningen av Ellington-arkivet.