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Carnegie Hall December 1947 Live

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Audio CD, Live, July 1, 1991
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Disc 2
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 1, 1991)
  • Original Release Date: 1947
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Live
  • Label: Prestige
  • ASIN: B000000ZDC
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #474,239 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By Richard C. Ferris on March 12, 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a Prestige, two CD release, with a total playing time of 100 minutes. There‘re 21 live tracks including both a Johnny Hodges and Ellington “Band Theme” medley series.

Also included, is an extended work titled”The Liberian Suite”. One of the lesser known Ellington efforts to create a more serious musical project. It’s a very compelling piece and it helped influence Ellington’s greatest success in this genre,” Far East Suite”.

Performing these extended musical efforts in a concert setting was the primary motivation for the Carnegie Hall appearances.

The CD’s sound is good, given the concert age and the relatively primitive (by today’s standards) audio equipment used at the time. In fact, the 1947 concert provides the best sound experience out of the four Carnegie Hall appearances.

The performers included Ray Nance, Johnny Hodges, Harry Carney, Al Sears, Jimmy Hamilton, Oscar Pettiford and Sonny Greer, just to name a few.

Ellington’s remarkable composing talent could not be confined to three minute dance numbers. He strived to create more serious work. He realized this material would not be accepted in a night club venue. It could only be appreciated in concert. Ellington’s strategy involved the introduction of original extended pieces while intertwining them with familiar commercial numbers.

The concert begins with a tune composed and arranged by Billy Strayhorn,”The New Look”. It’s an up tempo number with a solid performance by Ray Nance. The second number is Mercer Ellington’s” Blue Serge” it features the melodic sax of Al Sears.
Next, the band plays one of the most swinging performances of”Harlem Airshaft” ever recorded. Harold Baker’s trumpet leads the way on this arrangement.
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