1980sDuke EllingtonInstrumental MusicJazz MusicMusicMusic ConcertsPop Music

Music – 1980 – Billy Taylor & Orchestra – Caravan – Live On Kennedy Center Salute To Duke Ellington

Caravan is an American jazz standard that was composed by Juan Tizol and Duke Ellington….and first performed by Ellington in 1936….as Irving Mills wrote lyrics….but they are rarely sung. The exotic sound of “Caravan” interested exotica musicians….as Martin Denny, Arthur Lyman, and Gordon Jenkins all covered it…..plus, Woody Allen used the song in two of his films….Alice and Sweet and Lowdown…..while  Steven Soderbergh used the Lyman version in his 2001 film Ocean’s Eleven. The song appears often in the 2014 film Whiplash as an important plot element….and the Mills Brothers recorded an a cappella  version in which they imitated instruments with their voices…then Johnny Mathis recorded the song in 1956….as more than 350 versions have been recorded. 

In this video seen herewith….Billy Taylor + His All Star Orchestra perform “Caravan” on the 1980 television special of The Kennedy Center presents A Tribute To Duke Ellington…..which featured such jazz greats as singers Sarah Vaughan and Joe Williams….along with legendary jazz drummer Max Roach….who plays with Billy Taylor + His All Star Orchestra.

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