1001 Albums You Must Hear (and Blog about) Before You Die

My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die

996. Ellington at Newport – Duke Ellington

Brief Background: Ellington and his orchestra, like many of the other big bands of the era, had been facing a severe decline in popularity. This all changed after their performance at the Newport Jazz Festival in 1956. The subsequent release of this performance led to a resurgence popularity and reputation to the current day. The catch…. this album isn’t really the Newport performance. Bad audio quality led the band to go to the studio to re-record that performance. Only forty percent of what is on the album is the actual live performance. The actual performance was discovered in 1999 and was released as an album: http://rd.io/x/QVpb1yJc5DA/

What I liked: I really enjoyed the vibe and the slow build of the band.

What I Didn’t Like: This has been my most difficult album of this project so far. I want to love it, I just don’t. There is something about vocal that is burnt into me and music without has never been my thing. So while I love jazz in a pop song format (I’m thinking Louis Armstrong), I can’t get into the traditional formats (Miles Davis, Duke Ellington). I hold out hope that someday my tastes will change and I’ll fall in love with this stuff.

My Overall Thoughts: It’s just not my thing as much as I want it to be…

Do I agree or disagree with the writers as to this being an album you must listen to? I actually disagree with this one. It was well known by the time this book was released that this was not the actual performance from the Newport festival. As a live album it would be a great performance, but I don’t think that stands up as a studio performance.

Rating (Out of 5): 2/5

Amazon Review (Out of 5): 4.5

Is this my first time hearing this album? Yes (6/6)


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This entry was posted on November 15, 2013 by and tagged , , , .

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