My Brainwaves in His Head, and His in Mine - Duke Ellington & Billy Strayhorn (1941 - 1967)

Russell Perry By

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Duke Ellington was the well-spring that flowed through many decades of jazz. In 1938, Ellington found his soul-mate in composer/arranger Billy Strayhorn. By the early 1940s, Strayhorn combined with bassist Jimmy Blanton and tenor saxophonist Ben Webster to reinvigorate both Ellington and his band. In this hour, we will feature the compositions and arrangements of Ellington's most important collaborator, Billy Strayhorn, from "Take the A Train" and "Chelsea Bridge" through "Satin Doll" and "Lush Life" to his dying lament—"Blood Count"—from 1967.


  • Host Intro 0:00
  • Duke Ellington Orchestra. "Take The "A" Train" from Never No Lament -The Blanton-Webster Band (RCA) 3:19
  • Duke Ellington Orchestra. "Chelsea Bridge" from Big Band: Vol. 018, Duke Ellington (1941) (Encyclopedia of Jazz) 6:15
  • Host speaks 9:06
  • Duke Ellington & His Famous Orchestra. "Just A-Settin' and A-Rockin'" from Never No Lament -The Blanton Webster Band (RCA) 11:05
  • Duke Ellington & His Famous Orchestra. "Satin Doll" from Passion Flower (Proper) 14:38
  • Host speaks 17:32
  • Johnny Hodges and His Orchestra. "Day Dream" from Masterpieces 1926-1949 (Proper) 19:20
  • Johnny Hodges and His Orchestra. "A Flower Is A Lovesome Thing" from The Jeep Is Jumpin' (Proper) 22:17
  • Johnny Hodges and His Orchestra. "Passion Flower" from Passion Flower (Proper) 25:00
  • Host speaks 28:05
  • Duke Ellington -Billy Strayhorn duo. "Tonk" from Complete Jazz Series 1945 -1946 (Classics) 28:50
  • Host speaks 31:33
  • Art Tatum solo. "Just-A-Sittin' And A-Rockin'" from The Genius of Art Tatum #4 (Clef) 33:05
  • Oscar Peterson-Ray Brown duo. "After All" from Music By Oscar Peterson -Keyboard (Clef) 35:50
  • Nat King Cole. "Lush Life" from Passion Flower (Proper) 39:25
  • Host speaks 42:41
  • Duke Ellington & His Orchestra. "Blood Count" from The Norton Jazz Recordings (Norton) 45:42
  • Host Outro 49:55
  • Duke Ellington solo. "Lotus Blossom" from ...and His Mother Called Him Bill (RCA) 50:51
  • Host Outro 54:49

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