Music – 1980 – Sarah Vaughan + Joe Williams – It Don’t Mean A Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)

“It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)“ is a 1931 composition by Duke Ellington….whose lyrics were written by Irving Mills….which is now accepted as a jazz standard…..as jazz historian Gunther Schuller characterized it as “now legendary” and “a prophetic piece and a prophetic title”.  The music was composed and arranged by Ellington in August 1931 during…

Music – 1980 – Joe Williams – Those Who Are Lonely Too – At Kennedy Center Salute To Duke Ellington

Edward Kennedy “Duke” Ellington (April 29, 1899 – May 24, 1974) was an American composer, pianist and leader of a jazz orchestra….which he led from 1923 until his death over a career spanning more than six decades.  Ellington was shortlisted for the Pulitzer Prize for Music in 1965….but no prize was ultimately awarded that year…..when at 66 years old, he joked that…

Music – 1980 – Joe Williams – Do Nothing Til You Hear From Me – Kennedy Center For Duke Ellington

“Do Nothing till You Hear from Me“ is a song with music by Duke Ellington….and lyrics by Bob Russell…. which was originated as a 1940 instrumental….“Concerto for Cootie”….that was designed to highlight the playing of Ellington’s lead trumpeter, Cootie Williams….whereas Russell’s words were added later.  In 1944, Ellington’s own recording of the song was a # 1 hit on the R&B chart for eight…

Music – 1980 – Sarah Vaughan + Joe Williams – It Dont Mean A Thing If It Aint Got Tha Swing

“It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)“ is a 1931 composition by Duke Ellington….  whose lyrics were written by Irving Mills…..which is now accepted as a jazz standard….as jazz historian Gunther Schuller characterized it as “now legendary” and “a prophetic piece and a prophetic title”.  The music was composed and arranged by Ellington in August 1931 during…

Music – 1980 – Kennedy Center Presents A Salute To Duke – With Sarah Vaughn + Ella Fitzgerald Et Al

Duke Ellington (April 29, 1899 – May 24, 1974) was an American composer, pianist and leader of a jazz orchestra….which he led from 1923 until his death over a career spanning more than fifty years.  Although Duke was born in Washington, D.C….he lived in New York City from the mid-1920’s until his death….while gaining a national profile through…

Music – 1980 – Joe Williams – Those Who Are Lonely Too – Kennedy Center Salute To Duke Ellington

As the Depression worsened….the recording industry was in crisis….while dropping over 90% of its artists by 1933….that is when Ivie Anderson was hired as the Duke Ellington Orchestra’s featured vocalist in 1931….as she is the vocalist on “It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)” in 1932….while Sonny Greer had been providing occasional vocals….and as…

Music – 1980 – Joe Williams – Do Nothing Til You Hear It From Me – From Salute To Duke Ellington

Joe Williams had a powerful voice with a smooth delivery that provide some of the best jazz vocals to ever grace the stage…..and after spending years on the road with the Lionel Hampton Orchestra and the Count Bassie Orchestra….he join Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, Max Roach and Billy Taylor + His All Star Orchestra to…

Music – 1980 – Sarah Vaughan + Joe Williams – It Dont Mean A Thing If It Aint Got That Swing

Joe Williams (December 12, 1918 – March 29, 1999) was an American jazz singer….who sang with big bands such as the Count Basie Orchestra….and the Lionel Hampton Orchestra….plus with his combos…. while singing in two films with the Basie orchestra….and sometimes he worked as an actor.  Williams worked as a singer and bouncer in Chicago in the late 1930’s and early 1940’s….when he began singing…