| THE INTERNATIONAL|
DUKE ELLINGTON MUSIC SOCIETY
04/3 December 2004 - March 2005
26th Year of Publication
FOUNDER: BENNY AASLAND
Voort 18b, 2328 Meerle, Belgium
Telephone: +32 3 315 75 83
We send messages to all DEMS members for whom we have an e-mail address, announcing the publication of a "fresh" DEMS Bulletin. We have done so four times so far, for 04/1, for 04/2, for 04/2-55 and for notifying you that this Bulletin 04/3 would be a few days late. Some of our messages bounced. DEMS members with an e-mail address, who have not received these announcements, are invited to send us their correct e-mail addresses. The same offer is made to anybody else, who happens to be interested in DEMS Bulletins and who would like to receive these announcements.
This Bulletin is much larger than any Bulletin before. Thanks to Peter MacHare's hospitality there are no restrictions anymore for including long articles nor is there a reason to postpone long articles for future Bulletins.
At the recent Stockholm conference (see 04/2-10), Steven Lasker developed an interesting theory that a part of the music copyrighted by Jo. Trent was actually written by Ellington. Steven told us that he was working on an article about Jo. Trent. The article is ready now and DEMS has the privilege to publish it in this Bulletin (see 04/3-57). In his corresponding letter Steven reminded me of a special anniversary:
"Ellington's earliest released records, Blu-Discs T1002, T1003 and T1007, appeared exactly 80 years ago this December. In commemoration, here is the Blu-Disc/Up-to-Date piece I promised--much improved from previous drafts and ready for posting with the December DEMS.
80 years of Ellington records....now that's an anniversary worth celebrating....as is the blissful fact that fresh material by Ellington continues to surface with regularity 30 years after the maestro's departure."
Not long ago Jørgen Mathiasen published on the Duke-LYM list an excerpt of his presentation for the 7th Nordic Jazz Research Conference in Denmark in August of this year. He gave us permission to publish it in full in this Bulletin. See 04/3-58.
A long and interesting article about Timme Rosenkrantz can be found on 04/3-55. It is written by Mike Matloff, who found Timme's name in DEMS Bulletins on Internet and contacted me.
Elaine Norsworthy gave me permission to "re-print" an article by Eddie Lambert which was published in Coda Magazine almost twenty years ago. It is about Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue. You find it under number 04/3-56.
I wish all DEMS Bulletin readers (new and old) a Merry Christmas and a very Happy 2005.
You sure will have a lot of reading to do during the holidays! Enjoy!!
NEW (and older) BOOKS
Dan Morgenstern, "Living with Jazz". A Dan
The first chapter that attracted my attention in the table of contents, was titled "Discography: The Thankless Science", written by Dan in 1966. It ends with: "Jazz discography has come of age, and the hardest work has already been done, by men who have sought and gained no material profit from their enterprise. The least they deserve is a heartfelt thanks from all who profess to love jazz."
I have had only time to read a few articles dedicated to Ellington and was especially moved by Dan's eyewitness report of Duke's only studio recording session with Louis Armstrong. I felt I should try to read more and give you my personnel review in this Bulletin, but I have just received through the courtesy of Jo Ann Sterling and Arne Neegaard via Duke-LYM a copy of an article on Dan Morgenstern's book in the Newark Star-Ledger of 29Nov by Zan Stewart. If you missed it, you can find it here:
I am sure that all of you who have access to Internet have read this fine article and I will be happy to send a hard-copy to those who have no access. I am sure that Dan's 673 pages will give me a lot of reading pleasure in the next couple of weeks. And I am convinced that this book is a must for every right-minded jazz fan.
Go to Amazon.com and punch in "Living with Jazz." They sell the book for $23.80.
Clark Terry's autobiography
When Clark Terry was here to play with my band last spring, he told me he had just finished his autobiography. Does anyone know anything about when it might be published? CT said that the book was going to be controversial because "I told the truth!"
Dan Aldag, Humboldt State University**
A much valued message from a dear friend
See DEMS 04/2-19 and 04/2-10 (presentation by Brian Priestley, start second day)
This is a wonderful way to receive the DEMS bulletin. I read it quickly and then saved it on my hard disk. I can go back and read more slowly whenever I wish. No stacks of paper around the house that could possibly be discarded. I am glad that circumstances have dictated that it be available on the internet. My kudos.
About Charlie Mingus hearing Slam and Jimmie Blanton both play. No, Mingus was not there the night I wrote about. If you read this again, the night-club where I took Jimmie was segregated, black people were not accommodated. It was just a small night club, not an auditorium. However, Slam worked in Los Angeles for about 6-8 months in 1941. The Ellington band was also here for a long time, doing movies and "Jump for Joy". There surely were other opportunities. As you have a copy of my book, you are aware that there are a number of typos. I feel very badly that we were not able to correct everything before the book had to go to press. Several friends have given me their corrections. I am now working on a re-write and hope to have a second printing by the end of the year. There will be no more paperbacks, only hard cover. I really wrote the book for you and all the Ellington people, so I hope it is being enjoyed. The high point of my year was seeing all of you in Stockholm. Let us hope that New York in 06 will happen and we will all meet again.
Claire Gordon, "My Unforgettable Jazz Friends".
See DEMS 04/2-19
Claire Gordon still has a few copies left of her "My Unforgettable Jazz Friends." This book is unlike any other jazz book I have ever read. It is so personal, and reading it makes me feel like I'm back at the Glenn Miller Cafe in Stockholm listening to her personal reminiscences of Duke, Benny Carter, Nat Cole and others.
Ms. Gordon showed remarkable persistence in publishing this book herself; you can order it directly from her at <email@example.com>
A few people have been contacting me after Claire Gordon published her autobiography "My Unforgettable Jazz Friends". They wanted to know about "a second recording Rex Stewart made with the Swiss Henri Chaix group." (on page 217). Well fact is it never happened. Rex did one record with the group after a short tour (4 concerts) through Switzerland on 12Jun66 here in Baden. The recording was issued on two different labels ("Ex Libris" and "Polidor International") because Henri Chaix and me weren't at all satisfied with the first Ex Libris-issue.
The same recording has now been reissued by the Canadian "Sackville", so I thought you might be interested to know the facts. [See for this release this Bulletin 04/3-48]
Mark Tucker, The Ellington Reader
Purely by chance I discovered that Oxford University Press has reissued Mark Tucker's book "The Ellington Reader" in paperback for only $20 plus tax, shipping and handling. The URL for Oxford University Press in the US is: www.oup.com
The following two DVDs, recently released by Carinco AG in Switzerland, deserve mention; although liner-notes are absent and the jacket-infos spare and largely in error, they are very cheap (Eur 6.99 each recently in Germany), of surprisingly good quality, zone-coded 0 in PAL and run for approximately 59 and 64min respectively:
Planet Song 8627 "Soft And Gentle" has the BYEN-TV programme from 23Jan67 New Desor 6709a-p
Planet Song 8628 "On The Jazz Train" has the 1941 "Ellington Soundies" 4124a-e, the 1952 Snader Transcriptions 5203abcdefgh and four titles from the Sep68 film "Memories Of Duke": 6851i, 6852abc.
I don't know where to order these DVDs. I purchased them recently in Cologne and found them currently available in such multi-media stores as "Media-Markt" and "Saturn".
See for a recently released DVD/CD combination 04/3-35.
Ambassador Hotel, Los Angeles. At the Cocoanut Grove, "Duke Ellington's famous dusky orchestra of the Ziegfield Follies discoursed dandy jazz music for an hour and made a great hit." Celebrities present included Gosden and Correl, Kalmar and Ruby, Melville Brown, Roscoe Arbuckle, Mack Sennett, Loretta Young, Louise Brooks, Mervyn LeRoy, Skeets Gallagher, Carl Laemmele, and Carl Laemmele Jr. The regular band at the Cocoanut Grove, led by Gus Arnheim, featured vocals by The Rhythm Boys, with whom Ellington would record Three Little Words for Victor on 26Aug30. (Per The Hollywood Filmograph, 30Aug30p6.)
Duke Ellington and Count Basie both performed at Paseo Hall in Kansas City, MO. This date has been incorrectly listed as 31oct36, and incorrectly described as a "battle of the bands." [See Chris Sheridan "Count Basie" p20.]
Kansas City Call, 30Oct36, p2
A look at the contemporary African American press tells the true story. Count Basie and his Barons of Rhythm were headliners for their "farewell dance" on 31oct36, also at Paseo Hall. They would soon leave for an opening at the Grand Terrace in Chicago, followed by further engagements on the East Coast — Basie's move to the big-time. Basie and his band were hired to "assist" (as the local union band) Ellington’s orchestra two nights later. The review of the 2Nov36 dance is barely legible. Here is my best interpretation:
Whoever it was who started the rumor that Duke Ellington’s star of popularity was fast descending in the musical heavens should have trekked to Paseo hall Monday night and looked in on the proceedings. The more than 2,000 persons who crammed into every available inch of space in the hall were emphatic that Kansas City still goes in a big way for the Duke of Ellington and group.
Count Basie and his Barons of Rhythm, making their final appearance here before departing for Chicago and the Grand Terrace, opened the evening’s entertainment and played with usual gusto. Around 10:30 o’clock Duke and the boys took the spotlight.
With Ivy Anderson doing the vocal, Ellington went to town on It Don’t Mean a Thing, Stormy Weather, Solitude, Troubled Waters and other numbers that had the huge crowd applauding." (Kansas City Call, 6Nov36, p14)
Basie recalled in his autobiography, "we couldn’t stay for the main event because we were scheduled to leave for Chicago that night," and that Duke "made it his business to come outside of Paseo Hall and …wish us good luck." (Basie, Good Morning Blues, pp. 176-77)
Duke Ellington performed at the Coliseum in St. Louis on 31oct36, after attending a football game that afternoon. (St. Louis Argus, 30oct36, p5; and 6Nov36, p5).
"Soon after their arrival" in Kansas City on 1Nov36, Duke and his
father had dinner at the home of Mr. and Mrs. E.J. Berry, and were
guests of the Berrys again on 3Nov. The band was scheduled to leave
Kansas City for Texas on 7Nov. (Kansas City Call, 6Nov36,