Duke Ellington, et al.: 1969: All-Star White House Tribute to Duke Ellington (2002)
The tribute band featuring, among others, Dave Brubeck, Paul Desmond, Clark Terry, Joe Williams, J.J. Johnson, Jim Hall, and Milt Hinton, elegantly works through twenty-seven Ellington / Strayhorn compositions, including “Take the ‘A’ Train, “Satin Doll, “Sophisticated Lady,” and “Mood Indigo.” The musicians all play the repertoire straight and do not stray too far from the composer original intentions, but each track is a true gem of wonderfully performed music that made Ellington proud.
Ellington is not a performer on this album until the last track, which is a three minute solo piano piece and sounds mostly improvised dedicated to the President Nixon’s wife entitled “Pat.” “Pat,” not only is the only track that Ellington performs on, but also, the albums only original composition, which until now, wasn’t available anywhere.
Very rarely does an unreleased album come along that not only contains this much top rate music performed by a great ensemble, but also is a historically significant event. “1969: All-Star White House Tribute to Duke Ellington” resides in the ‘must have’ category for any jazz and/or Ellington fan.
Track Listing: 1. Take the A Train 2. I Got It Bad 3. Chelsea Bridge 4. Satin Doll 5. Sophisticated Lady 6. Just Squeeze Me 7. I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart 8. Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me 9. Don
Personnel: Duke Ellington
Record Label: Blue Note Records
Style: Dixieland/New Orleans/Swing