All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

149

John Brown Trio: Dancing With Duke: An Homage To Duke Ellington

Edward Blanco By

Sign in to view read count
The history of jazz would not be complete without an understanding of just how influential Duke Ellington was to its development. North Carolina bassist John Brown appreciates the impact Edward Kennedy Ellington has had on American music, especially jazz, and offers his own tribute to the icon on Dancing with Duke: An Homage to Duke Ellington. Along with New Orleans drumming sensation Adonis Rose and the incomparable pianist Cyrus Chestnut, the John Brown Trio delves deeply into the Ellington song book and emerges with eight of the master's most notable compositions, bolstered by Juan Tizol's classic "Perdido" and Billy Strayhorn's "A Flower Is A Lovesome Thing."

Though Brown has known Chestnut and Rose since his touring days with Elvin Jones in the early '90s, this is their very first recording date together, and what an encounter it turns out to be. "In A Mellow Tone" starts the music rolling with a solid, relaxed rhythm, guided by Brown, and Chestnut's light left-hand chording. The music perks up on the following "Do Nothing 'Til You Hear From Me," featuring a good deal of strong bass lines energizing the piece. Brown introduces "Pie Eye's Blues" to the drummer's steady drum beats on a number that many may not recognize as an Ellington staple.

The centerpiece of the album is clearly the three-part "Sweet Ballad Suite," which features Strayhorn's somber "A Flower Is A Lovesome Thing," drenched by Rose cymbal accents, Brown's legato bass and Chestnut's tranquil chords. The familiar "I Got It Bad (And That Ain't Good)" and lyrical, slow-tempo'd "Solitude"—showcasing Brown's superb arco work—rounds out the suite and the ballad portion of the set.

The oft-recorded "It Don't Mean A Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)" is, perhaps, the defining swing piece of the album, with the trio swinging the melody and adding fine solos for a memorable finale. Dancing with Duke: An Homage to Duke Ellington is Brown's sophomore disc and an impressive second effort at that. With stellar musicianship from world-class players and fresh treatments of select jazz standards from the Ellington songbook, this is one swinging tribute of which the Duke would surely have approved.

Track Listing: In A Mellow Tone; Do Nothing 'Til You Hear From Me; Perdido; Pie Eye's Blues; Isfahan; I'm Beginning To See The Light; A Flower Is A Lovesome Thing; I Got It Bad (And That Ain't Good); Solitude; It Don't Mean A Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing).

Personnel: John Brown: bass; Cyrus Chestnut: piano; Adonis Rose: drums.

Title: Dancing With Duke: An Homage To Duke Ellington | Year Released: 2011 | Record Label: Self Produced

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Quiet Time

Quiet Time

Brown Boulevard Records
2014

buy
Quiet Time

Quiet Time

Brown Boulevard Records
2012

buy

Related Articles

Read with whom you can be who you are CD/LP/Track Review
with whom you can be who you are
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: September 21, 2018
Read Inner Core CD/LP/Track Review
Inner Core
by Troy Dostert
Published: September 21, 2018
Read Dirigo Rataplan II CD/LP/Track Review
Dirigo Rataplan II
by Jerome Wilson
Published: September 21, 2018
Read The Window CD/LP/Track Review
The Window
by Chris Mosey
Published: September 21, 2018
Read Mønk CD/LP/Track Review
Mønk
by Chris May
Published: September 20, 2018
Read The Music of Gary Lindsay / Are We Still Dreaming CD/LP/Track Review
The Music of Gary Lindsay / Are We Still Dreaming
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 20, 2018
Read "More Songs About Error And Shame" CD/LP/Track Review More Songs About Error And Shame
by Friedrich Kunzmann
Published: May 20, 2018
Read "Music For David Mossman" CD/LP/Track Review Music For David Mossman
by John Sharpe
Published: September 2, 2018
Read "The Other Side of Time" CD/LP/Track Review The Other Side of Time
by Kevin Press
Published: January 31, 2018
Read "Radio Omnibus" CD/LP/Track Review Radio Omnibus
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: June 5, 2018
Read "Returnings" CD/LP/Track Review Returnings
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 13, 2018
Read "Tokyo 1975" CD/LP/Track Review Tokyo 1975
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: July 11, 2018