Duke Ellington Reader

ISBN-10: 0195093917

ISBN-13: 9780195093919

Edition: 1995

Authors: Mark Tucker

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Duke Ellington is universally recognized as one of the towering figures of 20th-century music, both a brilliant composer and one of the preeminent musicians in jazz history. From early pieces such as East St. Louis Toodle-O, Black and Tan Fantasy, It Don't Mean a Thing, and Mood Indigo, to his more complex works such as Reminiscing in Tempo and Black, Brown and Beige, to his later suites and sacred concerts, he left an indelible mark on the musical world. Now, in The Duke Ellington Reader, Mark Tucker offers the first historical anthology of writings about this major African-American musician. The volume includes over a hundred selections--interviews, critical essays, reviews, memoirs, and over a dozen writings by Ellington himself--with generous introductions and annotations for each selection provided by the editor. The result is a unique sourcebook that illuminates Ellington's work and reveals the profound impact his music has made on listeners over the years. The writers gathered here represent a Who's Who of jazz criticism: Gunther Schuller, Whitney Balliett, Martin Williams, Gary Giddins, Stanley Crouch, Albert Murray, Nat Hentoff, Hugues Panassie, Stanley Dance, to name just a few. Their writings span Ellington's entire career, from the days when Duke Ellington's Washingtonians appeared at New York's Club Kentucky ("Probably the 'hottest' band this side of the equator"), to the Duke's glorious reign at the Cotton Club, to his later years as global ambassador of American music. Tucker has included some of the classic essays written about Ellington, such as R. D. Darrell's "Black Beauty," the first significant critical essay on Ellington's work and still one of the most important; Richard O. Boyer's lengthy New Yorker profile "The Hot Bach," printed here in its entirety; and Martin Williams's "Form Beyond Form," one of the best capsule introductions to Ellington's art. Throughout the book, the reader receives a balanced overview of Ellington's life as composer and performer, as public personality and private individual. Tucker provides a number of pieces on Ellington's compositions, including an entire chapter devoted to critical response to Ellington's Black, Brown and Beige, and there are also many moving pieces on Ellington the man, such as Ralph Ellison's tribute to Ellington on his 70th birthday, and Stanley Dance's funeral address. Finally, Tucker rounds out the collection with profiles on many of the outstanding musicians who worked with Ellington, among them Johnny Hodges, Bubber Miley, Billy Strayhorn, Ivie Anderson, Sonny Greer, Joe "Tricky Sam" Nanton, and Ben Webster. This is a landmark volume in jazz criticism, a kaleidoscopic portrait of Duke Ellington's creative world, documenting his extraordinary achievements as composer, songwriter, bandleader, and pianist. It is an essential companion for Ellington enthusiasts, jazz fans, and serious students of American music.
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Book details

List price: $29.95
Copyright year: 1995
Publisher: Oxford University Press, Incorporated
Publication date: 6/1/1995
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 560
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.50" long x 1.50" tall
Weight: 1.694

Early Years (1899-1927)
Ellington on Washington, D. C. (1973)
The Washingtonians: First New York Review (1923)
Reviews from the Kentucky Club (1925)
The Washingtonians "Set New England Dance Crazy" (1927)
Cotton Club Bandleader (1927-1932)
First Cotton Club Review (1927)
R. D. Darrell: Criticism in the Phonograph Monthly Review (1927-1931)
Abbe Niles on Ellington (1929)
Two Early Interviews (1930)
Janet Mabie in the Christian Science Monitor
Florence Zunser in the New York Evening Graphic
Ellington's First Article: "The Duke Steps Out" (1931)
The Ellington Orchestra in Cleveland (1931)
Ellington Crowned "King of Jazz" by the Pittsburgh Courier (1931)
A Landmark in Ellington Criticism: R. D. Darrell's "Black Beauty" (1932)
First Trip Abroad (1933)
Spike Hughes: Impressions of Ellington in New York (1933)
Spike Hughes: "Meet the Duke!" (1933)
Ellington at the Palladium (1933)
On the Air in London (1933)
Ellington Defends His Music (1933)
Hugues Panassie: "Duke Ellington at the Salle Pleyel" (1946)
Ellington: "My Hunt for Song Titles" (1933)
Into the Swing Era (1933-1942)
Wilder Hobson: "Introducing Duke Ellington" (1933)
The "Secret" of the Ellington Orchestra (1933)
Warren W. Scholl: Profile of Ellington in the Music Lovers' Guide (1934)
Roger Pryor Dodge on Black and Tan Fantasy, from "Harpsichords and Jazz Trumpets" (1934)
Constant Lambert on Ellington (1934)
Ellington's Response to Lambert (1935)
Ellington on Gershwin's Porgy and Bess - and a Response from the Office of Irving Mills (1935/1936)
John Hammond: "The Tragedy of Duke Ellington" (1935)
Enzo Archetti: "In Defense of Ellington and His 'Reminiscing in Tempo'" (1936)
Helen Oakley (Dance): The Ellington Orchestra at the Apollo (1936)
R. D. Darrell: Ellington in an Encyclopedia (1936)
"Ellington Refutes Cry That Swing Started Sex Crimes!" (1937)
Aaron Copland on Ellington (1938)
Ellington: "From Where I Lie" (1938)
Ellington in Down Beat: On Swing and Its Critics (1939)
The Parting of Ellington and Irving Mills (1939)
Wilder Hobson on Ellington, from Jazzmen (1939)
A Celebrity Interview (1941)
Ellington: "We, Too, Sing 'America'" (1941)
Interview in Los Angeles: On Jump for Joy, Opera, and Dissonance as a "Way of Life" (1941)
Black, Brown and Beige (1943)
Previews of the First Carnegie Hall Concert (1943)
Helen Oakley (Dance) in Down Beat
Howard Taubman in the New York Times Magazine
Program for the First Carnegie Hall Concert (23 January 1943)
Two Reviews (1943)
Paul Bowles in the New York Herald-Tribune
Mike Levin in Down Beat
The Debate in Jazz (1943)
John Hammond: "Is the Duke Deserting Jazz?"
Leonard Feather: Leonard Feather Rebuts Hammond
Bob Thiele: "The Case of Jazz Music"
Black, Brown and Beige in a List of "Classical Records" (1946)
Robert D. Crowley: "Black, Brown, and Beige After 16 Years" (1959)
Brian Priestley and Alan Cohen: "Black, Brown and Beige" (1974-1975)
The Hot Bach (1943-1949)
Ellington's "Defense of Jazz" (1943/1944)
Carnegie Revisited (1943/1944)
Richard O. Boyer: "The Hot Bach" (1944)
Ellington: "Certainly It's Music!" (1944)
Ellington: "Swing Is My Beat!" (1944)
An Ellington Solo Piano Transcription in Down Beat (1944)
"Why Duke Ellington Avoided Music Schools" (1945)
"Interpretations in Jazz: A Conference with Duke Ellington" (1947)
Alec Wilder on Ellington (1948)
The Fifties
Ellington's Silver Jubilee in Down Beat (1952)
Ellington on Career Highlights
Lists of Favorites
Billy Strayhorn: "The Ellington Effect"
Ned Williams on "Early Ellingtonia"
Irving Mills: "I Split with Duke When Music Began Sidetracking"
Andre Hodeir: "A Masterpiece: Concerto for Cootie" (1954)
An African View of Ellington (1955)
George Avakian: Ellington at Newport (1956)
Ellington: "The Race for Space" (ca. late 1957)
Andre Hodeir: "Why Did Ellington 'Remake' His Masterpiece?" (1958)
Selections from The Jazz Review (1959)
Mimi Clar: "The Style of Duke Ellington"
Quincy Jones on Newport 1958
Max Harrison on Anatomy of a Murder
The Late Years (1960-1974)
Irving Townsend: "When Duke Records" (1960)
Ellington: "Where Is Jazz Going?" (1962)
Pete Welding: "On the Road with the Duke Ellington Orchestra" (1962)
Ellington with Stanley Dance: "The Art Is in the Cooking" (1962)
Ellington on the Air in Vancouver (1962)
Eddie Lambert: "Duke Ellington - 1963" (1963)
A. J. Bishop: "Duke's Creole Rhapsody" (1963)
Dan Morgenstern on The Ellington Era (1963)
A. J. Bishop: "'Reminiscing in Tempo': A Landmark in Jazz Composition" (1964)
Ellington: "Reminiscing in Tempo" (1964)
Nat Hentoff: "This Cat Needs No Pulitzer Prize" (1965)
Ellington: "The Most Essential Instrument" (1965)
Ellington: Program Note for "A Concert of Sacred Music" (1965)
Rex Stewart at a Recording Session for the First Sacred Concert (1966)
Gary Giddins on the Sacred Concerts (1975)
Gary Giddins on The Afro-Eurasian Eclipse (1976)
Stanley Dance: "The Funeral Address" (1974)
Selected Commentary and Criticism (1964-1993)
Max Harrison: "Some Reflections on Ellington's Longer Works" (1964; revised 1991)
Ralph Ellison: "Homage to Duke Ellington on His Birthday" (1969)
Martin Williams: "Form Beyond Form" (1970; revised 1983, 1993)
Albert Murray: From The Hero and the Blues (1973)
Gunther Schuller: "Ellington in the Pantheon" (1974)
Gunther Schuller: "The Case for Ellington's Music as Living Repertory" (1974)
Lawrence Gushee: "Duke Ellington 1940" (1978)
Stanley Crouch on Such Sweet Thunder, Suite Thursday, and Anatomy of a Murder (1988)
Helen Oakley (Dance): "Impressions of Johnny Hodges" (1936)
"The Duke Ellingtons - Cotton Clubbers En Masse" (1937)
Roger Pryor Dodge on Bubber Miley (1940)
Ivie Anderson (1942)
Reactions of a Newcomer: Al Sears Interviewed by George T. Simon (1944)
Inez M. Cavanaugh: Three Interviews (1945)
Otto Hardwick
"Tricky Sam" Nanton
Rex Stewart
Double Play: Harry Carney and Johnny Hodges Interviewed by Don DeMichael (1962)
Rex Stewart: "Illustrious Barney Bigard" (1966)
Guitarist Freddy Guy Interviewed by John McDonough (1969)
Sonny Greer Interviewed by Whitney Balliett (1974)
Gary Giddins on Paul Gonsalves (1985)
Stanley Crouch on Ben Webster (1986)
Billy Strayhorn Interviewed by Bill Coss (1962)
Ellington: "Eulogy for Swee' Pea" (1967)
Topical Index of Selections
General Index
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