Duke Ellington- April 29, 1899 in DC -- May 24th, 1974
● Composer/ arranger/ bandleader/ pianist
● highly regarded musicians in Jazz
● tried to create an art form out of jazz
● Jazz has been a popular music before this/ tried to make it more sophisticated
● His approach to orchestra as an ensemble as individuals (wanted every musician to be
heard in a band)
● different approach to combinations to sound (treating sound as colors to a palette)
● Great upbeat songs. solitude/ sophisticated ladies
● He didn't come from a poor family
● formed his first band in HS . known as the Washingtonians
● Talented in art and won a scholarship, but declined the scholarship to stay with the band
● brought the band to NY to see if they can succeed but they didn’t made it.
● Then they went back to NY and found enough work to keep the band going.
● 1927 - became the Cotton House Band in Harlem.
● Developed the 4 styles at the Cotton Club
○ Jungle Style- created for this kind of performance. Instruments made animal type
○ Mood Style - beautiful slow balance to which the ppl danced on the dance floor.
○ Concerto Style - music that featured different musicians.
○ Standard Style - when ellington and the band played music and made sounds.
● him and the band also made recordings outside of the jobs.
● stayed at the cotton club till 19_2
● then the ppl left the club because they were angry about the depression.