Duke Ellington - Reminiscing In Tempo (2010)
DVD-5 | Runtime: 75 min. | 4,19 GB | Copy: Untouched
Video: NTSC, MPEG-2, 720 x 480 (1.333) at 29.970 fps | Audio: AC-3 at 448 Kbps, 6 channels, 48.0 KHz
Genre: Jazz, Swing | Label: Wienerworld | Covers: Not included
Obviously put together with a great deal of love, both by director Gary Keys and Ruth Ellington Boatwright (Duke Ellington?s sister, who for 23 years after his death celebrated Duke?s birthday with a gathering of family, friends, and musicians each year), Duke Ellington: Reminiscing In Tempo, released by MVDvisual on March 22, 2011, stands out among music DVDs. A musician who was told by his parents ever since he was a child that he was special and blessed, during a time of racial discrimination as he was growing up in Washington, D.C., Duke Ellington became well-known and moved his mother and sister to live with him in New York City, where he was so over-protective of Ruth that he never let her go out at night or have a social life.
Living on the road with his orchestra, Duke Ellington breathed music non-stop, staying up to work on new songs after his concerts each night. In the South, since hotel rooms for colored musicians were abominable, Duke made his orchestra members comfortable by renting Pullman cars in railroad yards where they could sleep. Duke?s grandfather was a slave, released by the white Irishman who was actually his father, from the farm on which he was born. When Duke (Edward Kelly) Ellington (1899-1974) died he took off a cross his sister Ruth had given to him and flung it out the window to heaven, and then he was gone.
Duke also gave many singers and musicians a chance that others wouldn?t. Blind singer Al Hibbler remembered hearing Duke?s records in department stores because his poor Mississippi farm didn?t even have a radio, after which his father would say, ?Quit hooping and hollering ?cause we have to meet the mule man tomorrow.? But when Al grew up and went to New York City, Duke Ellington not only let him audition for him but then let him sing with his band! On the other side of the spectrum, in the East Room of the White House President Nixon played Happy Birthday to Duke on the piano for his 70th birthday. Duke had wanted to avoid this by insisting on touring until his sister Ruth told him he was crazy and he had to go to the White House!
?All the kids in the band want you to know that we love you madly,? Duke Ellington would say to the audience before a performance, dressed to the hilt in tails and tophat. He travelled to foreign countries and produced The Mexican Suite, The Liberian Suite, and The Far Eastern Suite, and when he wanted to perform his Sacred Concert album in Russia and was told that he couldn?t because they were not a religious state, he played it at the American Embassy in Moscow instead.
In New York City at the intersection of 110th Street we now have Duke Ellington Circle, not far from the entrance to Central Park, with a 20-ft. monument with karyatids holding up a pedestal on which there stands a statue of Duke and his piano. Throughout this DVD we get to hear Reminiscing In Tempo, Don?t Get Around Much Anymore, Do Nothing ?Til You Hear From Me, Mood Indigo, The Single Petal Of A Rose (which he wrote for Queen Elizabeth), Take The ?A? Train, Sophisticated Lady, In A Sentimental Mood and many more songs. Packed with vintage rare music videos and photos of Duke Ellington And His Orchestra, this DVD is a delight for anyone who already knows the Duke?s music or anyone in the new generation who wants to learn it.
- Sophisticated Lady (1933)
- Take The `A` Train (1941)
- C-Jam Blues (1942)
- Satin Doll (1953)
- Single Petal of a Rose (1958)
- Come Sunday (1943)
and many more...