Skip to content

Duke Ellington And His Orchestra – Afro-Bossa (1963/2011) [Official Digital Download 24bit/192kHz]

Duke Ellington – Afro-Bossa (1963/2011)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/192 kHz | Time – 33:24 minutes | 1,4 GB | Genre: Jazz
Official Digital Download – Source: | Front cover | © Warner Bros. Records

The experimental Afro Bossa features Duke Ellington pushing his talented group to their limits. The jazz master tosses around the forms he knows so well. Other players include Cat Anderson, Paul Gonsalves, Harry Carney, and Cootie Williams. There is plenty of cornet, violin and plunger-muted trumpets.

Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn combined old and new compositions to create the album Afro-Bossa, a suite consisting of a dozen pieces that was never performed in its entirety in concert, though several of the works remained in the band’s repertoire. The title cut is a new work, though the “Bossa” does not refer to Brazilian music; instead, it is a mix of African and Latin influences that slowly builds with insistent percussion to a blazing finale of brass and reeds. “Purple Gazelle” (which was also recorded as “Angelica” in Ellington’s small group session with John Coltrane, was described by the pianist as a “ragtime cha-cha.” Cootie Williams (on muted trumpet), Ray Nance, Paul Gonsalves, and the composer are all featured soloists. Ellington returns to the jungle sound with the exotic “Moonbow,” showcasing a trio of dissonant clarinets and Nance’s effective plunger mute work on trumpet, along with the matchless altoist Johnny Hodges. Strayhorn’s “Tigress” puts the spotlight on Gonsalves, Williams, and clarinetist Jimmy Hamilton in an infectious Latin setting. “Pyramid” dates from 1938, written by Ellington with Juan Tizol, but it is trombonist Lawrence Brown who takes over Tizol’s role, along with contributions by baritonist Harry Carney and Williams. This is easily one of Duke Ellington’s essential studio recordings of the 1960s, though it isn’t as widely recognized as it ought to be.

01 – Afro-Bossa
02 – Purple Gazelle
03 – Absinthe
04 – Moonbow
05 – Sempre Amore
06 – Silk Lace
07 – Tigress
08 – Angu
09 – Volupte
10 – Bonga
11 – Pyramid
12 – Eighth Veil


%d bloggers like this: