Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
The Best Of The Duke Ellington Centennial Edition
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Classical
The 24-disc Complete RCA Victor Recordings is a bountiful musical feast as nourishing and satisfying as any. This single-CD snapshot offers mere morsels, but in doing so provides a worthwhile sampler plate for those lookin... more »
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The 24-disc Complete RCA Victor Recordings is a bountiful musical feast as nourishing and satisfying as any. This single-CD snapshot offers mere morsels, but in doing so provides a worthwhile sampler plate for those looking for a taste of each of Ellington's creative periods. Spanning 50 years of jazz genius, the 18-song collection begins with Cotton Club-era favorites featuring the growling horns of Bubber Miley and "Tricky Sam" Nanton, moves through the Duke's artistic peak of the early 1940s (featuring tenor Ben Webster and bassist Jimmy Blanton), samples the extended Black, Brown and Beige suite and Sacred Concerts, and culminates with several late-1960s gems from successes such as The Far East Suite and the tribute to departed Billy Strayhorn. In addition, this set features a number of oddities from the Ellington oeuvre--an almost-eight-minute medley from 1932 that was one of the earliest long players as well as an early attempt at stereo (thanks to a double-mic setup), a 1945 date with Tommy Dorsey's orchestra, and a 1946 Esquire all-star summit with Louis Armstrong. As a useful and musically superb overview of the master's career, this record stands on its own; however, don't be surprised if it simply whets your appetite for more Ellingtonia. --Marc Greilsamer
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Please break up the set!
(5 out of 5 stars)
"As soon as BMG breaks up the $400 24-CD Centennial set that is highlighted in this collection, I'm making a beeline for the early Ellington. Between tracks #10 and #11 there is a notable degradation in sound quality (although no track in this collection has the bad sound of, say, "The Okeh Ellington"). Turning to the liner notes reveals that #1-#10 were digitally restored by Steven Lasker using CEDAR. These are the years 1927-1942. Hearing the 1932 Ellington band in true stereo on #4 is a revelation (they made two simultaneous recordings from two mics as an experiment). Oh, if they had only done this on all recordings of the period, for that future day when technology could utilize the second tracks. I'm looking for music to play for Swing dances, and from this collection, #3, 6, 8, 10 and 12 are suitable. Let's hope BMG issues the 24 CDs separately to allow people access to their favorite Ellington periods."
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm a youngish guy and the trouble I have with a lot of "my dad's music" is that it seems like you had to be there. A great artist's style is copied and used so often that when, decades later, you go back to the source, you're not hearing anything revolutionary -- the thing that made the original artist great in the first place. That's doesn't seem to be the case with this CD. This CD seems really "alive" to me. The music bursts from the speakers and jumps all around you. I can still hear the passion and brilliance in this music that I often find missing from other supposedly "great" performers of a bygone era. I'm very impressed with this record."
The duke is at it again...
Johnny Boy | 04/27/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Once agin the duke is at it again Exercising some of music's most eloquent styles. He is (and will for a long time be) one of music's most profound practicioners..."