Duke's Joint

Duke's Joint

by Duke EllingtonDuke Ellington

CD

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Overview

No sooner does RCA give us the Ellington Centennial box, containing all of the known Ellington recordings for RCA/Victor, then its new Buddha imprint raises the ante with this extraordinary 16-song collection of previously unissued live broadcast transcriptions. Mostly drawn from a series of October 1945 broadcasts from Cafe Zanzibar in New York, the disc features several fine numbers that Ellington never cut officially, showing off the best orchestral jazz band in history near the peak of its lineup. One of those lost numbers, "Three Cent Stomp," is especially delectable to the ear, a romp for the players that draws the listener completely into the spirit of the moment. There's also some surprising experimentation here -- Ellington didn't just confine his more daring ideas to Carnegie Hall -- most notably "Yesterdays," a strangely compelling mood-piece which features classical singer Kay Davis's soaring contralto. Most of the focus is on the instrumentalists -- Johnny Hodges is featured all over, along with Cat Anderson, Jimmy Hamilton, and Rex Stewart, but Hodges' sax sparks the most stirring moment here, a jam called "Blues on the Double" that's worth the price of the disc by itself, as he and the band show how effective the blues can be, even at high velocity. The sound ranges from good to excellent, and is far cleaner and brighter than the 55-year-old recordings would lead one to expect -- the sources for the Cafe Zanzibar transcriptions appear to have been glass masters that were broken in transit, and have been reassembled with astonishing success.

Product Details

Release Date: 06/15/1999
Label: Buddha
UPC: 0744659962929
catalogNumber: 99629

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Duke Ellington   Primary Artist,Piano
Cat Anderson   Trumpet
Johnny Hodges   Alto Saxophone
Ray Nance   Trumpet,Violin,Vocals
Betty Roché   Vocals
Sears   Tenor Saxophone
Joya Sherrill   Vocals
Sonny Greer   Drums
Harry Carney   Bars
Kay Davis   Vocals
Fred Guy   Guitar
Jimmy Hamilton   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Claude Jones   Tuba
Joe "Tricky Sam" Nanton   Tuba
Juan Tizol   Tuba,Vocals
Lloyd Trotman   Bass
Elmer "Skippy" Williams   Tenor Saxophone
Wallace Jones   Trumpet
Junior Raglin   Bass
Otto Hardwick   Alto Saxophone
Chauncey Houghton   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone

Technical Credits

Mercer Ellington   Composer
Rex Stewart   Director
Taft Jordan   Director
Peter DeRose   Composer
Duke Ellington   Composer
Will Friedwald   Producer,Liner Notes
Shelton Hemphill   Director
Paul Francis Webster   Composer
Murray Brenman   Art Direction
Si Schwartz   Composer
Sammy Gallop   Composer
Ted Persons   Composer
Milt Orent   Composer
Glenn Korman   Producer
Alex Miller   Series Executive Coordinator
Sid Kuller   Composer

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