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Billy Strayhorn:Lush Life CD


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Lush Life
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Billy Strayhorn:Lush Life + Piano Passion + Juice A-Plenty. Billy Strayhorn & Johnny Hodges. Johnny Hodges, Soloist. Billy Strayhorn and Orchestra + Billy Strayhorn!!! Live!!!
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 22, 2011)
  • Original Release Date: 2007
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Blue Note
  • Run Time: 65 minutes
  • ASIN: B000LSAJ52
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #71,904 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Fantastic Rhythm
2. Rain Check
3. Lush Life
4. Satin Doll
5. Something to Live For
6. Johnny Come Lately
7. Day Dream
8. Tonk
9. Chelsea Bridge
10. My Little Brown Book
11. Valse
12. Blood Count (My Flame Burns Blue)
13. The Flowers Die of Love
14. Lotus Blossom
15. So This Is Love

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Billy Strayhorn:Lush Life by Billy Strayhorn

This product is manufactured on demand using CD-R recordable media. Amazon.com's standard return policy will apply.

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From 1938, until his death in 1967, composer/arranger/pianist Billy Strayhorn was so entwined with Duke Ellington that musicologists are still trying to figure out where the former ends and the latter begins. On this companion soundtrack to the PBS documentary, pianists Bill Charlap and Hank Jones display their solo chops on the stridish "Fantastic Rhythm" and the soulful "Satin Doll" and reprise the great Ellington-Strayhorn four-hand piano workout, "Tonk." Vocalist Dianne Reeves and guitarist Russell Malone brilliantly navigate the harmonic challenges of the title track, while she and her rhythm section dance "Something to Live For" with an Ahmad Jamal bounce. Tenor saxophonist Ben Webster would approve of Joe Lovano's quartet rendition of "Chelsea Bridge," featuring Jones, bassist George Mraz, and drummer Paul Motian. Lovano and Charlap anchor Elvis Costello's languid lyrics on "My Flame Burns Blue (Blood Count)," adding another interpretive layer to the eternal artistry of this compelling and confounding musician. --Eugene Holley, Jr.

Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By James Lamperetta on January 27, 2007
Format: Audio CD
The twenty-nine year partnership between Billy Strayhorn and Duke Ellington produced an unrivaled body of work. Running the gamut from popular songs and jazz compositions to orchestral suites and theatrical scores the fruits of their collaboration have a truly timeless quality and continue to inspire and intrigue musicians and audiences alike.
"Billy Strayhorn: Lush Life" is a 90-minute documentary which will debut nationally as part of PBS's Independent Lens series on Feb. 6. As one would expect, the complex relationship between these two pioneering African-American musicians and the resultant mystique will be a central theme in this first in-depth exploration of the brilliant composer/pianist/arrangers life.
The companion soundtrack of the same name has recently released by Blue Note and it is an elegant star-studded affair. Covering some of Strayhorn's most enduring compositions, the disc also spotlights equally satisfying lesser known titles too.
It is no coincidence since Strayhorn was a pianist that the instrument is prominent throughout courtesy of Bill Charlap, Hank Jones, and Peter Martin. Charlap takes solo strolls on both the disc opening "Fantastic Rhythm" and the classical piece "Valse." Jones goes it alone on the Ellington/Strayhorn gem "Satin Doll" while he and Charlap offer up an inspired four-handed rendition of "Tonk," which was originally performed in a similar fashion by Strayhorn and Ellington.
Dianne Reeves delivers vocals on six of the fifteen tunes. Strayhorn's signature piece "Lush Life" is a stark duet with guitarist Russell Malone. "Something to Live For," "Day Dream," "My Little Brown Book" and the more obscure "The Flowers Die of Love" and "So This Is Love" all feature her accompanied by a trio.
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33 of 35 people found the following review helpful By PH-50-NC on February 7, 2007
Format: Audio CD
A previously reviewer wrote this was worth buying for "works that have not been recorded before, such as: 'Fantastic Rhythm', 'Valse', 'The Flowers Die Of Love' and 'So This Is Love'"....

Actually, all of those compositions have been recorded previously thanks to the efforts of the Dutch Jazz Orchestra/Jerry Van Rooijen and musicologist Walter van de Leur (who was interviewed on-camera for the Strayhorn PBS documentary). The albums "So This Is Love" "Portrait of a Silk Thread" and "Something to Live For" are full of previously unrecorded Strayhorn (previous to the late 1990s), most with original big band orchestration. Some feature vocals by Marjorie Barnes (I believe that's her name). All are available as part of a 4-CD box that also includes a CD of Strayhorn arrangements of standards (i.e. "Great American Songbook" popular music).

Also worth exploring are the two studio sessions that could properly be called Strayhorn solo albums: "The Peaceful Side of Billy Strayhorn" (originally on United Artists, now on CD from one of the EMI imprints) and the posthumously released "Lush Life" CD on Red Baron records, which is a studio recording of Strayhorn's 1965 New School concert (mentioned in the documentary).This last CD features some of the rare vocal tunes by Strayhorn heard in the documentary and on the tie-in CD reviewed on this page.

It's wonderful that all of this music, new and old, is out on CD and showing off the gifts of Strayhorn. I would recommend buying the Dutch Jazz Orchestra and Strayhorn solo discs before buying the CDs that are tie-ins to David Hadju's excellent Lush Life biography and this new PBS documentary.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By William E. Haley, Jr. on March 30, 2007
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The CD resulting from the PBS Lush Life documentary is a prize. I only wish there had been a way to include a couple of performances by Ellington-Strayhorn era people such as Johnny Hodges' Passion Flower. Most of us collectors have that, however, so it is not a great oversight.

But to hear great pianists of different generations doing Strayhorn justice (Bill Charlap and the ageless Hank Jones) is fantastic. And Diane Reeves has become the newest pretender to Ella's throne. What a great choice for the vocals. The only thing better must be having the dvd of the marvelous documentary on the life of an important and somewhat overlooked composer, Billy Strayhorn.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By liz on September 30, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Wishing to hear more of Billy Strayhorn's music, especially Lush Life number, I was disappointed that a soloist obscured the tonal chord nuances . Maybe I did not read carefully the pr before ordering. So beware.
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By Doreen Appleton on December 15, 2013
Format: Audio CD
The DVD of the documentary never came out. Amazon doesn't have it, PBS doesn't have it, and it's been a few years. I don't think we're going to see it any time soon.
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