Live and Rare

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Will Meyerhofer
This handsomely packaged three-CD set from Bluebird collects nearly four hours of rare performances, both curiosities and treasures, from the prolific final decade of Duke Ellington’s life. There’s enough fresh, fascinating, and downright brilliant material here to guarantee that any self-respecting Ellingtonian will want to hunker down with this set for at least a week before calling up his friends to say, “You’ve got to hear this….” The first disc is dominated by the Duke’s solo piano work and puts to death once again the old canard about the great man’s “limited” technique. The disc opens with one of the Duke’s very last live dates, recorded in Eastbourne, ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Will Meyerhofer
This handsomely packaged three-CD set from Bluebird collects nearly four hours of rare performances, both curiosities and treasures, from the prolific final decade of Duke Ellington’s life. There’s enough fresh, fascinating, and downright brilliant material here to guarantee that any self-respecting Ellingtonian will want to hunker down with this set for at least a week before calling up his friends to say, “You’ve got to hear this….” The first disc is dominated by the Duke’s solo piano work and puts to death once again the old canard about the great man’s “limited” technique. The disc opens with one of the Duke’s very last live dates, recorded in Eastbourne, England, in December 1973. The band is in fine form, with elegant versions of favorites like “Creole Love Call,” “Don’t You Know I Care?,” and “I Can’t Get Started” certainly worth preserving. But it is on Duke’s solos, accompanied by Joe Benjamin on bass and Rocky White on drums, that he’s playing for eternity. One moment of genius arrives at the end of the program, when Duke plays “Meditation,” a shimmering statement of serenity from the Third Sacred Concert. The first disc also contains four cuts from a piano workshop at the 1965 Pittsburgh Jazz Festival, including a remarkable blues duet between Duke and Earl Hines, with each pianist playing in a different stereo channel. There are even three solo tracks taped at a private party in 1968, including Duke soloing through “Satin Doll” while Willie “The Lion” Smith listens in. Disc 2 intersperses rare Ellington interview material with live recordings of Duke playing his classic compositions accompanied by Arthur Fiedler and the Boston Pops. The arrangements, by Richard Hayman, may be over the top, but the sound of Duke’s crisp, swinging piano over all that orchestral muscle is finally mesmerizing, especially on masterpieces like “Mood Indigo,” “Single Petal of a Rose,” and “The Mooche.” The third disc returns to print an exclusive Reader’s Digest recording from 1969 of the Ellington band swinging its way through arrangements of contemporary pop music. The material is occasionally cheesy -- “Spanish Flea” and “A Taste of Honey” -- but the band sounds fantastic, with Johnny Hodges and Cootie Williams and the rest of the resident geniuses tearing into this stuff like they were born to play it. The verdict? If this set is for you, you’ve probably ordered it before reading this far. Happy listening. Ellington was one old man who did not go quietly into the night -- and what a joyous noise he made.
All Music Guide - Ken Dryden
Many of this three-CD set's tracks are available elsewhere, excepting three previously unreleased performances from the 1968 Newport Jazz Festival announcement party, long-unavailable recordings made specifically for Reader's Digest plus some unreleased alternate takes, as well as unissued rehearsals for the bandleader's guest appearance with Arthur Fiedler & the Boston Pops. The press party is a noisy affair and the recording quality is hardly polished, as the crowd can't seem to shut up during Ellington's rollicking "Sweet Fat and That," "Satin Doll," and "Carolina Shout" erroneously credited to Ellington instead of James P. Johnson, which is suddenly broken off by the pianist, who seems to be a tad rusty. The Eastbourne tracks represent the band in its decline; although veterans Harry Carney and Russell Procope were still around, the lack of many other star soloists is noticeable, and although there are some excellent musicians present Johnny Coles, Harold Ashby, and Harold Minerve, to name a few, the band is clearly running out of steam. The music from the 1965 Pittsburgh Jazz Festival, featuring Ellington in a duet with Earl Hines, a solo performance, and one song with a rhythm section, has been reissued more than once. The Reader's Digest sessions are rather conservative, trying not to overwhelm the neophyte jazz fans the magazine was likely targeting; the music is pleasant with some good solos, but rather bland compared to typical Ellington dates. The Tanglewood concert with Fiedler is enjoyable, though the decision to intersperse excerpts of Ellington's prerecorded responses to a promotional interview between songs is a bit odd, with the bandleader actually digressing into talking about his weight problem. Put it all together and you have a set that may appeal to the die-hard Ellington collector, though it is hardly essential for most jazz fans.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/28/2006
  • Label: Tombstone Records
  • EAN: 4988017619018
  • Catalog Number: 38052/4

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 The Piano Player - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (2:57)
  2. 2 Creole Love Call - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (4:29)
  3. 3 Don't You Know I Care (Or Don't You Care to Know) - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (4:28)
  4. 4 I Can't Get Started - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (5:54)
  5. 5 New York, New York - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:01)
  6. 6 Pitter Panther Patter - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (2:27)
  7. 7 How High the Moon - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (2:17)
  8. 8 Basin Street Blues - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:14)
  9. 9 Tiger Rag - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:35)
  10. 10 Soso - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:43)
  11. 11 Meditation - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:25)
  12. 12 Mecuria, The Lion - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (4:11)
  13. 13 Take the "A" Train - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:46)
  14. 14 Ellington's Father's Day Greeting - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (1:56)
  15. 15 House of Lords - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (6:36)
  16. 16 The Second Portrait of the Lion - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (5:47)
  17. 17 Sweet Fat and That - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (2:43)
  18. 18 Satin Doll - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:55)
  19. 19 Carolina Shout - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (2:29)
Disc 2
  1. 1 Ellington Speaks (3:06)
  2. 2 Caravan (4:31)
  3. 3 Ellington Speaks (3:47)
  4. 4 Mood Indigo (2:51)
  5. 5 Ellington Speaks (2:54)
  6. 6 The Mooche (3:17)
  7. 7 Ellington Speaks (2:30)
  8. 8 I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart (2:44)
  9. 9 Ellington Speaks (2:31)
  10. 10 I'm Beginning to See the Light (2:37)
  11. 11 Ellington Speaks (1:32)
  12. 12 Do Nothin' Till You Hear from Me (2:38)
  13. 13 Ellington Speaks (2:57)
  14. 14 Sophisticated Lady (3:20)
  15. 15 Timon of Athens March (3:08)
  16. 16 Solitude (3:00)
  17. 17 I Got It Bad (And That Ain't Good) (4:11)
  18. 18 Satin Doll (2:34)
  19. 19 Love Scene (2:26)
  20. 20 Single Petal of a Rose (2:45)
  21. 21 The Mooche (3:30)
  22. 22 The Mooche (3:24)
  23. 23 Love Scene (2:18)
  24. 24 Love Scene (2:15)
  25. 25 I'm Beginning to See the Light (2:37)
  26. 26 Do Nothin' Till You Hear From Me (2:26)
  27. 27 Satin Doll (3:46)
Disc 3
  1. 1 La Dolce Vita - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:58)
  2. 2 Alfie - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:29)
  3. 3 Spanish Flea - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (2:28)
  4. 4 Mañha de Carnaval - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (2:26)
  5. 5 A Taste of Honey - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (2:38)
  6. 6 Summer Samba (Samba de Verão) - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:34)
  7. 7 Misty - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:27)
  8. 8 One Note Samba - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:53)
  9. 9 Soon It's Gonna Rain - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:38)
  10. 10 Mr. Lucky - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (2:14)
  11. 11 Walking Happy - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:09)
  12. 12 Moon Maiden - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:11)
  13. 13 La Dolce Vita - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (5:33)
  14. 14 Alfie - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:10)
  15. 15 A Taste of Honey - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (2:39)
  16. 16 Summer Samba (Samba de Verão) - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:41)
  17. 17 One Note Samba - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:50)
  18. 18 Soon It's Gonna Rain - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:49)
  19. 19 Soon It's Gonna Rain - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:42)
  20. 20 Soon It's Gonna Rain - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:34)
  21. 21 Moon Maiden - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:07)
  22. 22 Walking Happy - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (2:36)
  23. 23 Walking Happy - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (0:30)
  24. 24 Walking Happy - Duke Ellington & His Orchestra (3:42)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Duke Ellington Primary Artist, Piano
Arthur Fiedler Conductor
Cat Anderson Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Louie Bellson Drums
Johnny Coles Trumpet
Mercer Ellington Trumpet
Larry Gales Bass
Paul Gonsalves Tenor Saxophone
Earl Hines Piano
Johnny Hodges Alto Saxophone
Julian Priester Trombone
Cootie Williams Trumpet
Harold Ashby Clarinet, Tenor Saxophone
Lawrence Brown Trombone
Willie Cook Trumpet
Rufus "Speedy" Jones Drums
Wild Bill Davis Organ
Russell Procope Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
Luther Henderson Piano
Chuck Connors Bass Trombone
Norris Turney Flute, Alto Saxophone
Ben Riley Drums
Art Baron Trombone
Lee Barrie Trumpet
Joe Benjamin Bass
Harry Carney Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Baritone Saxophone
Victor Gaskin Electric Bass
Bennie Green Trombone
Money Johnson Trumpet, Vocals
Paul Kondziela Bass
John Lamb Bass
Steve Little Bongos
Lloyd Michels Trumpet
Vincent Prudente Trombone
Harold "Geezil" Minerve Flute, Alto Saxophone
Duke Ellington & His Orchestra Track Performer
Rocky White Drums
Anita Moore Vocals
Edward Kennedy Ellington Indexed Contributor
Technical Credits
Nino Rota Composer
Erroll Garner Composer
Thad Jones Composer
Eddie Edwards Composer
Nick LaRocca Composer
George Wein Producer
Wild Bill Davis Arranger
Richard Hayman Arranger
Luther Henderson Arranger
Kander Composer
Ed Begley Engineer
Johnny Burke Composer
Sammy Cahn Composer
Ron Collier Arranger
Stanley Dance Liner Notes
Peter Dellheim Producer
Dennis Ferrante Remastering
Antonio Carlos Jobim Composer
Orrin Keepnews Producer
Barney Keville Engineer
Brad McCuen Producer
Henry W. Ragas Composer
Tony Sbarbaro Composer
Bobby Scott Composer
Larry Shields Composer
Marcos Valle Composer
James Van Heusen Composer
Ellen Fitton Remastering
Ben Young Producer, Liner Notes, Reissue Producer
Charles Harbutt Remastering
Joshua Sherman Executive Producer
Ric Marlow Composer
Harry Da Costa Composer
Paulo Sérgio Valle Composer
Dino Verde Composer
Antonio Sbarbaro Composer
Edwin Edwards Composer
Marshall Barer Composer
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