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Chapters 7 and 8: Goodman, Basie, and Ellington

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Title: Chapters 7 and 8: Goodman, Basie, and Ellington


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(No Transcript)
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Chapters 7 and 8 Goodman, Basie, and Ellington
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Benny Goodman (May 30, 1909-June 13, 1986)
  • grew up in Chicago, son of an immigrant from
    Warsaw
  • received (classical) clarinet lessons from Franz
    Shoepp (Chicago Symphony), but also listened to
    jazz clarinetists
  • joined the musician's union in 1923
  • joined Ben Pollack's band in 1925. He recorded
    his first solo with Pollack ("He's the Last
    Word") on December 17, 1926.
  • Pollack's band moved to New York in 1928. Goodman
    left Pollack in 1929
  • one of the leading freelance musicians until
    1934, when he formed his first big band.

4
Goodman as Bandleader
  • began recording for Columbia in spring of 1934.
  • "Let's Dance (1934) book included arrangements
    by Henderson, Edgar Sampson, and others
  • Palomar Ballroom in Los Angeles on August 21,
    1935 (beginning of the Swing Era).
  • peak of success from 1936-39
  • Carnegie Hall concert January 16, 1938.
  • Innovations
  • High standards of musicianship.
  • First white bandleader to adopt (and popularize)
    an "uncompromising jazz style."
  • featured African American players.

5
Benny Goodman (May 30, 1909-June 13, 1986)
  • grew up in Chicago, son of an immigrant from
    Warsaw
  • received (classical) clarinet lessons from Franz
    Shoepp (Chicago Symphony), but also listened to
    jazz clarinetists
  • joined the musician's union in 1923
  • joined Ben Pollack's band in 1925. He recorded
    his first solo with Pollack ("He's the Last
    Word") on December 17, 1926.
  • Pollack's band moved to New York in 1928. Goodman
    left Pollack in 1929
  • one of the leading freelance musicians until
    1934, when he formed his first big band.

6
Goodman as Bandleader
  • began recording for Columbia in spring of 1934.
  • "Let's Dance (1934) book included arrangements
    by Henderson, Edgar Sampson, and others
  • Palomar Ballroom in Los Angeles on August 21,
    1935 (beginning of the Swing Era).
  • peak of success from 1936-39
  • Carnegie Hall concert January 16, 1938.
  • Innovations
  • High standards of musicianship.
  • First white bandleader to adopt (and popularize)
    an "uncompromising jazz style."
  • featured African American players.

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8
Ellington, Duke Edward Kennedy
  • (b Washington, DC, 29 April 1899 d New York, 24
    May 1974). American jazz composer, bandleader and
    pianist. He was for decades a leading figure in
    big-band jazz and remains the most significant
    composer of the genre. (New Grove Dictionary of
    Music and Musicians)

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the most significant composer of the genre
  • Successfully combined innovative elements of
    jazz with the dance band format.
  • Creative use of instrumental timbres,
    orchestration, and other compositional devices.
  • Use of extended and/or complex forms.
  • Ellington was a major contributor to the
    repertory of jazz and to the jazz language.

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a leading figure in big-band jazz
  • Ellington was also successful as a bandleader
  • He hired players with distinctive playing styles
    and wrote tunes that featured them.
  • Some of his players stayed with the band for
    decades.
  • Appearances in films (Black and Tan Fantasy,
    Check and Double Check, Anatomy of a Murder).
  • Distinctive musical style(s), including the
    jungle sound.

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The Jungle Sound
  • Reeds (especially clarinets) in extremes of the
    registers
  • Plunger and other mutes on the brass (wah-wah
    effect)
  • Use of the tom-toms and other special effects
    in the drums

12
Ellingtons Early Career
  • Serious about music as a teenager and learned to
    play the piano, began emulating local ragtime
    pianists.
  • Formed his own group Duke Ellingtons
    Serenaders and, by 1920, was making enough at
    music to support his wife (Edna) and son
    (Mercer).
  • Moved to New York in 1923 with the
    Washingtonians, a group that included Sonny
    Greer, Otto Hardwick, and Artie Whetsol. He later
    added Bubber Miley, Tricky Sam Nanton, and Harry
    Carney
  • Pieces such as East St. Louis Toodle-O (1926) and
    Black and Tan Fantasy (1927)

13
Black and Tan Fantasy
  • A study of contrasts, both within and outside the
    piece.
  • The title.
  • The main theme adapts a white spiritual (The Holy
    City), turning it into a minor blues.
  • The 12-bar minor blues contrasted with 8-bar
    phrases not in blues form.
  • Chopins Funeral March.

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The Cotton Club (1927-32)
  • one of New York's premier nightspots, located in
    Harlem at 142nd Street and Lenox Avenue.
  • Frequented by celebrities and socialites.
    Listeners nationwide could hear Ellingtons
    orchestra via broadcasts on NBC.
  • The band expanded to 12 pieces 3 reeds, 3
    trumpets, 2 trombones, piano, banjo/guitar, bass,
    and drums. Added musicians during this time
    included Johnny Hodges, Barney Bigard, Cootie
    Williams, and Juan Tizol.
  • Many of Ellingtons pieces were exotic in
    character, utilizing the jungle sound for which
    he was noted.
  • Ellington recorded over 180 sides between late
    1927 and early 1931, including The Mooche (1928)
    and Mood Indigo (1930).

15
The Swing Era (1933-1942)
  • (1943) English bandleader Jack Hylton brought the
    Ellington band overseas for performances in
    Britain, Holland, and France.
  • Performances in dance halls, theaters, and clubs
    radio broadcasts recording film appearances.
  • In addition to extended works such as Black,
    Brown and Beige, Ellington continued to compose
    shorter works (limited by the 3 minute format of
    the 78 RPM record) such as Harlem Air Shaft,
    Cotton Tail, and Main Stem.
  • Billy Strayhorn joined Ellington as arranger,
    composer, and pianist in 1939 he remained until
    his death in 1967. Strayhorn contributed such
    works as Take the A Train.

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The 1940s and 1950s
  • On January 23, 1943, Ellington performed his
    extended work Black, Brown, and Beige at Carnegie
    Hall. Ellington performed there several more
    times over the next few years.
  • In contrast to the relative stability of
    personnel during the thirties, Ellington's
    orchestra experienced a great deal of flux in the
    mid-to-late forties. Ellington left the Victor
    record company in 1946 and, after a short time
    with the Musicraft label, signed with Columbia.
  • Economic pressure and changes in musical
    preferences caused problems for big bands.
  • Ellington continued to turn out longer works as
    well as the music for the Otto Preminger film
    Anatomy of a Murder.
  • Ellington's triumphant appearance at the 1956
    Newport Jazz Festival
  • The band continued to travel in the US and in
    Europe (1950, 1958, and 1959).

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1960-1974
  • Ellington continued to write, record, and tour.
  • He received numerous awards, prizes, and honorary
    degrees.
  • Several international tours, including Europe,
    the Middle East and India in 1963, Japan in 1964,
    Latin America and Mexico in 1968, and the Soviet
    Union in 1971. These journeys sometimes inspired
    new compositions, as with the Far East Suite
    (1964), the Latin America Suite (1968), the
    Afro-Eurasian Eclipse (1970), and the Goutelas
    Suite (1971).
  • Ellington composed music for three Sacred
    Concerts between 1965 and 1973.
  • He recorded with various other musicians, among
    them Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Coleman
    Hawkins, and such younger luminaries as John
    Coltrane, Charles Mingus, and Max Roach.
  • His memoirs, Music is My Mistress, were published
    in 1973.
  • Ellington passed away from cancer on 24 May 1974.

18
Kansas City
  • territory bands
  • head arrangements
  • boogie-woogie
  • Mary Lou Williams
  • played publicly from an early age
  • Andy Kirk and the Clouds of Joy
  • pianist and arranger
  • a mentor to early bebop players (esp. Monk)

19
Count Basie
  • influenced by Harlem stride pianists.
  • By the age of 20 Basie was touring as a pianists
    and as a musical director for other entertainers.
  • began to work in Kansas City, playing in silent
    film theatres Blue Devils.
  • played with Bennie Moten until 1935, then formed
    a 9-piece orchestra known as the Barons of
    Rhythm.
  • radio broadcasts from the Reno Club in 1936.
  • 1950 Basie disbanded the big band, then
    reorganized band in 1952.
  • Innovations
  • Group sound organized around the rhythm section.
  • "classic" rhythm section (Basie, Walter Page, Jo
    Jones, and Freddie Green) altered the ideal of
    jazz accompaniment.
  • Pulse in the hi-hat cymbals instead of the bass
    drum.
  • "Walking" bass
  • "minimal" piano solo style.
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