Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington|
Stockholm Concert 1966
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
Listen to Samples
One of Ella's best recordings, Ella at her peak.
Mary Whipple | New England | 12/30/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Recorded in 1966 in Stockholm, Ella Fitzgerald (then aged forty-eight) and Duke Ellington are in perfect sync, and both are on top of the world, professionally. In this remarkable concert, Ella's trio of Jimmy Jones on piano, Joe Comfort on bass, and Gus Johnson on drums, becomes part of the Duke Ellington Orchestra, with Ellington's sax section, especially Paul Gonsalves and Johnny Hodges, adding dramatically to Ella's solos on this CD. Ella is relaxed, making free-wheeling changes to familiar songs, and having fun.
In the blockbuster opener, "Imagine My Frustration," Ella tells the tale of a wallflower at a dance--a narrative tour de force punctuated by wailing high notes, which are echoed by the trumpet section and a solo by Johnny Hodges. "Duke's Place," another hard swing song, includes a muted trumpet, which sounds like a voice, and Ella soaring and singing some scat.
She changes pace, slowing down dramatically with "Something to Live For," one of the most beautiful, slow songs she's ever recorded, her lovely phrasing of the lyrics ending with a whisper--one of my favorites of all Ella's recordings. "Let's Do It," sung with a sexy, growly voice, is wild, assertive, and ultimately very powerful, the tempo increasing as Ella varies the melodic line and sings with increasing crescendo.
The climax of the CD is "Cottontail," on which she sings scat so fast that it's impossible to imagine anyone covering so many notes so fast and staying on key. As she trades solo lines with Paul Gonsalves on sax, she hits warp speed, a performance so stunning that no one who hears it will ever forget it.
With two great jazz artists, Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington, operating on the same wavelength throughout this magnificent concert, the energy is incredible, and as they swing, play with melodies and rhythms, and highlight each other's performances, the audience is the winner. This is one of Ella's best recordings--bold, assertive, and completely loose. Mary Whipple
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