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by CiTR & Discorder Magazine
CiTR -- The Jazz Show

Duke Ellington and His Orchestra: "Afro-Bossa"


This gem from the thousands of recording that Ellington made is rather special. It was made during the time when the Ellington Orchestra was signed to Frank Sinatra's Reprise Records. All of the band's recordings during this period offered fresh new material and in this case and this album, music with a more exotic flavor. The title "Afro-Bossa" is a bit misleading as it is not strictly a bossa-nova recording but Ellington's concept of that unique Brazilian rhythm coupled with African influences and the multi-colors of the orchestra. All the major players are here in short solos, Paul Gonsalves, Ray Nance on trumpet and violin, Johnny Hodges on alto saxophone, Jimmy Hamilton on clarinet, Cootie Williams and powerhouse Cat Anderson on trumpets and Lawrence Brown on trombone and others. Some of the band members play percussion instruments on a few selections. All in all the 12 tunes are fresh and new and offer a great look at the immense creativity of Ellington and his compositional alter-ego Billy Strayhorn. Tonight "Afro-Bossa"...a true gem.



by CiTR & Discorder Magazine