The Popular Duke Ellington
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This CD reissue from 1997 features the Duke Ellington Orchestra running through 11 of the leader's hits and a lesser-known blues tune, "The Twitch." The 1966 version of his big band still had all of its main stars, including such major voices as trumpeters Cootie Williams and Cat Anderson, trombonists Lawrence Brown and Buster Cooper, altoist Johnny Hodges, Paul Gonsalves on tenor, and clarinetist Jimmy Hamilton. All are featured on The Popular Duke Ellington. Since the material is all very familiar, and mostly quite concise (nothing over six minutes long, and a version of "Do Nothin' Till You Hear from Me" that is under two minutes), few surprises occur. But Ellington fans will enjoy this well-played effort. [This version of the album includes bonus material.]
Born: 29 April 1899 in Washington D.C.
Years Active: '20s, '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s