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Thank You, Duke! (Our Tribute to Duke Ellington)

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Album Review

Everyone and their uncles were busy cranking out Ellington albums in 1999 — usually with the same imaginative titles ("A Tribute, "Our Tribute, " etc., etc.) — but this anthology has quite a few individual coups that stand out from the pack. Benny Golson is wonderfully loose and swinging on "Don't Get Around Much Anymore" yet manages an old-time breathy ballad style for "Mood Indigo." "In a Sentimental Mood" receives two renditions: Billy Taylor does an affectionate, impressionistic piano solo, and Ray Ellis (where has he been all these years?) produces a lovely neo-classical orchestral backing for Harold Land's majestic tenor saxophone. A group with Eric Reed on piano, Terrell Stafford on trumpet, and Steve Nelson on vibes that calls itself the Joe Henderson Project does an even mellower "Isfahan" than Henderson did on his breakthrough Lush Life album. For contrast, check out the often stark, sometimes dissonant duet between soprano saxophonist T.K. Blue and pianist Randy Weston on "Chromatic Love Affair." Joanne Brackeen does her own impressionistic solo twist on "Sophisticated Lady" and stirs up "Come Sunday" in a piano trio format. Finally Dutch bassist Joris Teepe closes with a slightly kooky "The Feeling of Jazz," with some echoes of Eddie Harris by tenor player Chris Potter. ~ Richard S. Ginell, Rovi

Thank You, Duke! (Our Tribute to Duke Ellington), Arkadia Jazz All-Stars
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  • €6.99
  • Genres: Jazz, Music
  • Released: 15 October 1999

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