Duke Ellington's Nutcracker Suite - Episode 1On this podcast I do a side by side comparison between the original by Tchaikovsky and the Ellington/Strayhorn version. A number of the Duke’s original members of his 1938-1941 band performed on the recording including: Lawrence Brown, Juan Tizol, Johnny Hodges, and Harry Carney. These are not “jazzy” versions of the suite, but often newly composed music in the spirit of the original reflecting the vision of both Ellington and Strayhorn coupled with the unique sound of the Ellington Orchestra. The soloists are just outstanding.
|Overture||Duke Ellington/Billy Strayhorn|
|Peanut Brittle Brigade||Duke Ellington/Billy Strayhorn|
|Dance of the Reed Pipes||Tchaikovsky|
|Toot Toot Tootie Toot||Duke Ellington/Billy Strayhorn|
|Russian Dance (Trapek)||Tchaikovsky|
Duke Ellington's Nutcracker Suite - Episode 2On this podcast I will compare the remaining 4 selections from both suites. The Ellington/Strayhorn versions of the suite reflect their respect for the original work. More importantly it shows an understanding of how to transform a classic while allowing it to maintain its relevance and integrity by making it more accessible to wider audiences. This 1960 version, with its unique jazz interpretion by two of the 20th century’s most important American composers, remains as popular as ever today.
|Arabesque Cookie||Duke Ellington/Billy Strayhorn|
|Waltz of the Flowers||Tchaikovsky|
|Dance of the Floreadores||Duke Ellington/Billy Strayhorn|
|Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy||Tchaikovsky|
|Sugar Rum Cherry||Duke Ellington/Billy Strayhorn|
|Chinoiserie||Duke Ellington/Billy Strayhorn|