Such Sweet Thunder
Essential Jazz Classics
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5 STARS DONWBEAT MAGAZINE (1957)
INCLUDES 3 BONUS TRACKS
The complete original album Such Sweet Thunder, Duke Ellington and Billy Dtrayhorn's musical vision of the works of William Shakespeare. As a bonus three extra tracks from the same sessions that were not included on the original LP, as well as two other complete Ellington suites: The Harlem Suite & The Controversial Suite.
For an African American jazz musician to compose a suite based on Shakespearian themes during the 1950s was certainly not an every day occasion. In fact, it would have been an ambitious project even for a classical composer. But as Irving Townsend explained in the original liner notes that follow, when the composer in question is the one-and-only Duke Ellington, no one is surprised at all. The result of many sessions, the current edition presents the complete original Such Sweet Thunder album (tracks 1-12) plus three tunes from the same sessions that were originally intended to form part of the suite but were later discarded ("Suburban Beauty", "A Flat Minor" and "Café Au Lait"). As a bonus, this release also includes two of Ellington's previous suites: The Harlem Suite, also known as A Tone Parallel to Harlem, and The Controversial Suite, a kind of humorous work written as a friendly critique of some of the different musical styles in jazz.
(1-15) Duke Ellington and his Orchestra Such Sweet Thunder:
Clark Terry, Willie Cook, Cat Anderson, Ray Nance (tp),
Quentin Jackson, Britt Woodman, John Sanders (tb), Jimmy Hamilton (cl, ts),
Russell Procope (as, cl), Johnny Hodges (as), Harry Carney (bar, cl, b-cl),
Duke Ellington (p), Jimmy Woode (b),Sam Woodyard (d)
New York, December 6, 1956 - May 3, 1957.
(16) The Harlem Suite. New York, December 7, 1951.
(17-18) The Controversial Suite. New York, December 11, 1951.
01 SUCH SWEET THUNDER
02 SONNET FOR CAESAR
03 SONNET TO HANK CINQ
04 LADY MAC
05 SONNET IN SEARCH OF A MOOR
06 THE TELECASTERS
07 UP AND DOWN, UP AND DOWN (I WILL LEAD THEM UP AND DOWN)
08 SONNET FOR SISTER KATE
09 THE STAR CROSSED LOVERS
10 MADNESS IN GREAT ONES
11 HALF THE FUN
12 CIRCLE OF FOURTHS
13 SUBURBAN BEAUTY
14 A FLAT MINOR
15 CAFÉ AU LAIT
16 A TONE PARALLEL TO HARLEM (THE HARLEM SUITE)
17 THE CONTROVERSIAL SUITE PART 1 (Before My Time)
18 THE CONTROVERSIAL SUITE PART 2 (Later)
Total Time 68:24