A Strayhorn Lagniappe: More Music & A Picture Book

First, I have to correct a glaring omission. In my post recommending Strayhorn recordings to pick up, I left off something that I myself own: Marian McPartland plays the music of Billy Strayhorn. Why did I clumsily leave it off the list? Because when … Continue reading

The Final Years – The Strayhorn Centenary Project

The homophobia that Joe Morgen, Duke Ellington’s publicist, possessed only reflected the homophobia of the society at large in the late 1950s. Around the time the New York Times ignored Strayhorn in its review of Such Sweet Thunder, a move … Continue reading

The Swing Era – The Strayhorn Centenary Project

1939 was a good year for a composer/arranger to join the Duke Ellington Orchestra. Several important musicians joined its ranks around this time, adding to the band’s considerable aural palette. Jimmy Blanton freed the bass from its simple time-keeping role … Continue reading