01/2 August - November 2001


Voort 18b, 2328 Meerle, Belgium
Telephone: +32 3 315 75 83


The 1931, 1933 and 1934 Advertising Manuals for Duke Ellington and His Famous Orchestra (Published by the office of Irving Mills). (Apparently lost) Motion picture trailers advertising Ellington.
A 1930 Ellington short: Pathé Audio Review No. 1

DEMS 01/2-15/1

See DEMS 01/1-18

An advertising manual (copy sent to DEMS) for Duke Ellington and His Famous Orchestra that dates from circa Sep Oct Nov 1931 describes on pages 3, 4 and 5 the sound on-film advertising trailers featuring Ellington, his orchestra and Harlem scenes synchronized with music by the band. These films were available to theatres for screening two weeks and one week in advance of Ellington's appearances. The advertising manual quotes the text viewers would see superimposed over the film images. (The text of the one-week advance trailer mentions Ivie Anderson, who joined the band on 13Feb31. Short of finding and viewing the film, however, there doesn't seem to be any way to determine whether or not her image actually appeared on screen.) The 1931 manual is one edition of at least three produced by the Mills office to promote Ellington. Two copies are known of an advertising manual that dates from circa September 1933. (A photographic copy of this edition is located in the Smithsonian's Ellington collection. It doesn't mention an advertising trailer.) Yet another edition (part of which is reprinted on pp152-159 of Stuart Nicholson's Reminiscing in Tempo, describes a single trailer available to theatres for screening a week in advance of Ellington's appearances. The text quoted in the manual as being from that trailer is similar, but slightly different, to that of the 1931 trailers. Nicholson's footnote informs that the last-mentioned edition dates from 1934 and is courtesy of Don McGlynn.
It is conceivable that the trailers used footage originally filmed for "Pathé Audio Review No. 1", or even original footage. (Being commercial films, "Black and Tan" and "Check and Double Check" must be considered less likely possibilities.) Alternatively, the trailers could consist of nothing more than still images to a soundtrack compiled from commercial records – or even non-commercial recordings that would be "fresh" to our ears. The trailer's photographic content is a mystery that will probably never be solved unless actual prints are discovered.
Steven Lasker**

Hayes Alvis and/or Billy Taylor

DEMS 01/2-15/2

See DEMS 01/1-15/3.

The ARC ledger shows two bassists present on all four titles from the orchestra's session of 27Feb36, which produced Echoes of Harlem (Brunswick 7650).
How did Ellington typically use two bassists? Here is an eyewitness description by Jack Ellis, that appeared in his Chicago Defender column "The Orchestras" on 26Jan35.
"....[Ellington has] two bass fiddles and one doubles on horn in playing hard hitting numbers. The horn usually makes two half notes to a measure, while the fiddle 'picks' four quarter notes, but in no case does the horn predominate. He uses the same system on the fiddles, one is 'sawing' half notes, while the other is picking quarter notes, and believe me, this will make a Chinaman 'swing.'"
The ledger entries for the Master Records sessions of 9Apr37, 22Apr37, and 14May37 show that – contrary to discographies – only a single bassist was present at each session. Unhelpfully, the ledger doesn't name the sidemen. Hayes Alvis? Billy Taylor? Harpo Marx? Opinions anyone?
Steven Lasker

Doin' the Crazy Walk

DEMS 01/2-15/3

See DEMS 01/1-18/2.

Duke Ellington and Irving Mills are the credited authors on the sheet music of Doin' the Crazy Walk, which was first published in 1930 and reprinted in a 1973 Belwin/Mills-Dover anthology, "The Great Music of Duke Ellington." The song originated in the Cotton Club revue "Blackberries of 1930," as did two others that were registered for copyright and published as sheet music that year: Bumpty Bump (music by Ellington, lyric by Irving Mills) and Swanee River Rhapsody (by Clarence Gaskill, Irving Mills and Duke Ellington). The cover of the sheet music for Swanee River Rhapsody lists six songs as from "Blackberries of 1930," the aforementioned three plus three others that are unknown in sheet music form, presumably unpublished: Cotton Club Stomp; Come Along, Mandy; and You're the Reason I Fell in Love.
As the composers of this Cotton Club Stomp aren't indicated on the sheet music cover of Swanee River Rhapsody, I don't know which of the two recorded versions was used in Blackberries of 1930." The "Hodges-Carney-Ellington" (Victor 1929; Brunswick 1939) version was registered with ASCAP in 1943 and presumably copyrighted the same year; I believe the music for the "Mills-Ellington" (Brunswick 1930) version to be uncopyrighted to this day.
Steven Lasker

Adelaide Hall

DEMS 01/2-15/4

In addition to my contribution to Bulletin 01/1-5 about another Adelaide Hall biography, I can now advise its imminent availability as below:
"Sophisticated Lady - A Celebration of Adelaide Hall" by Stephen Bourne will be published in October 2001 by the London-based publisher ECOHP (Hammersmith and Fulham Ethnic Communities Oral History Project) to commemorate Adelaide's centenary.
To coincide with the publication of the book, Bourne will also provide the sleeve notes to a new double CD compilation covering the years 1927-50 with some rare, unreleased recordings. This will be compiled by Hugh Palmer from his unique 78" record collection."
Stephen was a personal friend of Adelaide's in her later years. He is the author of the excellent book "Black in the British Frame: Black People in British Film and Television 1896-1996" which is due for re-printing shortly after the first edition sold out. He is also the researcher/scriptwriter for numerous BBC documentaries on black entertainment. Among others the one titled "Sophisticated Lady", the British TV program about Adelaide. His biography of Adelaide will be well researched and include much first hand knowledge.
Bill Egan

I know Hugh Palmer quite well and he lives near me in London. As I understand, Stephen Bourne 's work is a more basic biography without the much more researched stuff in the biography that I mentioned in the last Bulletin. However THAT one only goes up to about 1938.
Like Hugh, I was a close friend of Addie from the mid-70s onwards, when I first had the opportunity of meeting her when I sang on the same bill as she did at Ronnie Scott's Club...
A pity that they didn't contact me or I could have let them have some of an interview that I have on DAT, that I did with her soon after we first became friends... It would have been a nice addition to the contacts of the CD!
Earl Okin

Ivie Anderson

DEMS 01/2-16/1

See DEMS 01/1-14.

Ivie Anderson and William Johnson, married since 1Jun25, did not divorce but rather separated in May 1928, this according to the 30oct41 California Eagle which cited as its source a divorce complaint filed earlier that month by Anderson in a Los Angeles court. Thus, Anderson was wed to Johnson from the age of 19 until she was 36; she passed away at age 44.
Steven Lasker

Ivie Anderson's recordings without Duke Ellington's Orchestra

DEMS 01/2-16/2

See DEMS 01/1-14/2.

Some additions/corrections to Göran Wallén's list.
The Gotham Stompers 25Mar37, New York
The Gotham Stompers' Alabamy Home is a non-vocal performance. The song bears this title on the labels of Variety VA 626 and Master MA 137, as well as on the sheet music. The alternate title mentioned by Wallén, Alabamy Lane, isn't one I've encountered elsewhere (it isn't found in the files). A mistake perhaps?
[Indeed. This is the message DEMS received from Göran Wallén: "I am sorry to say that I made a mistake about the Ivie Anderson article in the last number of DEMS.
I took the wrong PC-file with the mistake included when I sent it to DEMS. The correct information is as Steven Lasker said in a letter three years ago to me as follows:
The correct name is Alabamy Home and nothing else."]
"A Day at the Races"
A longer version of All God's Chillun Got Rhythm from MGM's "A Day at the Races" has appeared on Rhino R2 70805 (see DEMS 00/3-8/1 and 00/4-17/4).
I entirely agree with Claude Carrière's observation that "it is true that one can recognise Barney Bigard and Cootie Williams [on the newly released portion]... however what one can hear behind them is not very Ellingtonian." My opinion, for what it's worth, is that Ellington wasn't a party to this recording.
"Jubilee" 19Apr43, Hollywood
I now have both parts of Jubilee 21 on AFRS ET.
On part two, Ivie sings Stormy Weather accompanied by an unidentified small group of trumpet, 2 alto saxes, tenor sax, piano, string bass and drums. The trumpet isn't Louis Armstrong, but a growler who sounds very much like Cootie Williams. While the Armstrong portion of the show – with Rochester and Jack Benny, no less – was recorded on 19Apr43 (helpfully, the date was mentioned during the program), Stormy Weather sounds like an insert, possibly "pre-recorded" earlier at a different location.
Hollywood, ca early 1944
Ivie Anderson with Ceelle [sic] Burke's Orchestra:
3 t; 3 tb; 2 as; possibly Bumps Myers, ts; as/bar; p;
Ceele Burke, g; sb; d; Max Walter, arr.
AMO 3113A   Mexico Joe          Exclusive no #; b/w mx. AMO 3117A
AMO 3114A   Play Me the Blues   Exclusive no #; b/w mx. AMO 3116A
NOTE: Ceele Burke is the vocalist on two additional titles believed cut at this session:
AMO 3116A   Now or Never
AMO 3117A   When the Ships Come Sailing Home Again
AMO 3115 is untraced. Anderson's Exclusive 78 of Mexico Joe was listed among Billboard Magazine's best-selling records in stores for the week of 8Apr44, according to Joel Whitburn's book "Pop Memories."
Wallén shows these sides as also issued on "Excellent," a label I've never heard of before.
"Jubilee," Hollywood, Oct45
Ivie Anderson accompanied by Johnny Otis and
His Orchestra: 4 t; 3 tb; 5 s; p; g; sb; Johnny Otis, d.
(Note: I distrust the accuracy of the Otis orchestra's personnel as shown on the jacket of Swingtime ST1009; as it is identical to that given by Charles Delaunay in his "New Hot Discography" (1948) for the band's circa 1946 session that resulted in Excelsior 157, Swingtime's data is likely copied from that source.)
He´s Tall, Dark and Handsome   AFRS "Jubilee" #152 pt. 1 (ET);
                               Swingtime ST1009 (LP)
"Jubilee," Hollywood, Oct45
Ivie Anderson accompanied by Harry Parr Jones, t;
Willie Smith, as; Corky Corcoran, ts; Calvin Jackson, p; Oscar Pettiford, sb; Eddie Heubreux and his rhythm section with Pepe Marrero, congas.
Jam Session Blues              AFRS "Jubilee" #152 pt. 1 (ET);
                               Swingtime ST1009 (LP)
Bill Hill interview
Ivie Anderson, Radio station CKMO, Vancouver, B.C., 27Sep47. Interviewed by Bill Hill (unissued).
Note: Bill Hill, president emeritus of the Duke Ellington Society, Southern California chapter, comments that the interview, of which he has a tape recording, is about 30 minutes long.
Steven Lasker

Ivie Anderson's recordings without Duke Ellington's Orchestra on CD

DEMS 01/2-16/3

See DEMS 01/1-14/2.

The ten 78 rpm sides (two for Exclusive and eight for Black & White) that Ivie Anderson recorded after she left the Ellington Orchestra, can be found on the CD, "Ivie Anderson - I Got It Good and That Ain't Bad" Jasmine JASMCD 2560. See DEMS 2000/1-19/5. Exclusive is the correct label name, not Excelsior as stated on the CD.
The recording in 1947 with Cee Pee Johnson Orchestra, Play Me the Blues, was used for Jubilee broadcast #60 and can be found on the CD, "The Best of AFRS Jubilee Vol. 4 -No. 60 & 77".
Richard Ehrenzeller

Bunny Hop Mambo

DEMS 01/2-16/4

Track 5 on side 1 of the English World Record Club WRC TP-86 Duke Ellington "Band Call" is titled Bunny Hop Mambo. It is accepted in the old Desor (574 b) and in Nielsen as a genuine Ellington recording of 26Apr54. It is however completely different from the recording with the same title on the Capitol releases. However, the liner notes by Burnett James on the WRC LP clearly describe the genuine Ellington version as on Capitol.
This matter was brought up by Ulf Renberg in DEMS Bulletin 82/2-6:
"Whose Bunny? – Bunny Hop Mambo on WRC TP-86 is no Duke-item, but whose Bunny is it? Did Voce (or was it Dance) tell us in Jazz Journal a few years back that it is Ray Anthony's band playing? Can anyone confirm or correct?"
Eddie Lambert answered in DEMS Bulletin 82/3-4:
"I can confirm that the version on WRC TP-86 is not by Ellington. It is in fact the recording of the piece by its composer, Ray Anthony. The confusion was no doubt a result of both versions having been recorded for Capitol."
Is Ray Anthony the trumpet-player on this WRC LP? I have had the record since it was released and never had any doubt that the muted trumpet chorus was Cat Anderson, along with the high notes at the end.
I see from "The Great Song Treasuries" that Ray Anthony has a U.S. hit with Bunny Hop in 1952. Is that the recording on WRC TP-86?
Graham Peacock

I Can't Put My Arms Around a Memory

DEMS 01/2-17/1

Al Hibbler recorded this Ellington tune on Decca, reviewed in Swedish Orkester Journalen 1/56. I have not heard it. What do you know about this tune? On the other side of the 45 single: They Say You're Laughing at Me.
Jan Bruér

I know nothing of the Decca 45 rpm.
The title I Can't Put My Arms Around a Memory is acknowledged in MIMM as copyrighted in 1944. The lyrics are by Don George.
Brooks Kerr played this tune on 28May87 during a presentation for the NYC chapter of TDES. I have a recording of that presentation, given to me by Morris Hodara.
Brooks explained that he received a lead-sheet of this 1944 composition in 1972 from Tom Whaley. Brooks suggested that one day somebody should sing it and record it. Apparently he was not aware of the existence of a Decca recording by Al Hibbler although Brooks and Al have spoken with each other several times.
The song on the flip side is unknown to me.
Do you want me to put your request in DEMS Bulletin? Maybe somebody else knows more about this Decca recording.
Sjef Hoefsmit

It seems to be a rare song and a rare recording. I will be at the Swedish Radio house on Tuesday and then I can check if they have that record. If not, it would be interesting to print the question in DEMS Bulletin.
Jan Bruér

I am very interested to hear the results of your search at the Swedish Radio House. If you need a copy of Brooks Kerr's rendition, please let me know.
Sjef Hoefsmit

Yes I am interested in Brooks Kerr's rendition. The Swedish Radio has I Can't Put My Arms... recorded in 1944 by the Woody Herman orchestra, vocal by Frances Wayne. I have not checked it.
Jan Bruér

I have now a copy of the Hibbler Decca EP with this unusual Ellington song, recorded probably 1955 without Ellington musicians, directed by Jack Pleis. Still quite nice.
Jan Bruér

Thank you very much for the cassette with I Can't Put My Arms Around a Memory. It is a nice pop song from those years. It is interesting to hear this rare Ellington composition. Thank you very much!
Sjef Hoefsmit

Al recorded I Can't Put My Arms Around a Memory also on the LP he made for the ITM label in the early 1960's. This LP was reissued on Chess. He is only accompanied by the Sir Roland Hanna trio on this record.
Woody Herman also recorded this song for V Disc.
Richard Ehrenzeller

How long is Loco Madi?

DEMS 01/2-17/2

See DEMS 91/3-2; 96/2-2 and 97/1-5.

The unedited version of Loco Madi that was only previously available in Japan is now available in the US. There is a new 20-bit issue of the Ellington Suites, with a yellow paper cover over the jewel case. The label is Pablo and the catalogue number is PACD-2310-762-2. The unedited version is 9:07 long. If you want this longer version, do not buy the Original Jazz Classics version OJCD-446-2. On this CD, it is 5:51 long.
Richard Ehrenzeller

Windmill LP WMD 198

DEMS 01/2-17/3

The liner notes of this LP say that all selections were recorded in New York at the Metropolitan Opera House on 17Jan45. This seems odd since Duke played the Philharmonic Auditorium in Los Angeles on the same day. The liner notes do not appear to be reliable in any case, since they claim that Ray Nance plays trombone and violin. Can you give me the correct dates of the selections?
Graham Peacock

This LP is a copy of the LP Decca PD 12.007, which contained almost exclusively V-Disc material. Creole Love Call is indeed from 1Dec43. It Don't Mean a Thing is from 21Apr45. Harlem Air-Shaft and Prelude to a Kiss are from 12May45. In the Shade of the Old Apple Tree and Frankie and Johnny are from 26May45. Ring Dem Bells and Diminuendo and Crescendo In Blue are from 7Jul45. Kissing Bug is from 8Sep45. See also 00/4-19/3.

Cootie Williams on Warwick

DEMS 01/2-17/4

See DEMS 01/1-23/3.

The correct title of the Cootie Williams CD is "Do Nothin' till You Hear from Cootie". Howard Rye asks about the personnel. By my ear, I feel the baritone saxophonist that is on half the album is Haywood Henry. Phil Schaap has told me he agrees with me.
Richard Ehrenzeller

Collectors' item?

DEMS 01/2-17/5

I just acquired a Duke LP titled "Duke Ellington" CBS CSP 16769. It states on both the cover & label "Manufactured for Christopher & Karen Cox". That seems rather odd to me for a major label like CBS!
The track selection is listed as (I haven't played it yet) Take the "A" Train (excerpt), Blutopia, Sentimental Journey, Passion Flower, Air Conditioned Jungle, Frantic Fantasy, Main Stem, Everything but You, Carnegie Blues, Emancipation Celebration & Don't Get Around Much Anymore. The copyright date is 1982. Any idea what this is?
Geff Ratcheson

Thanks for your copy.
The LP is documented in Jerry Valburn's "Directory of DE's Recordings" (May 1986) on page 5-25 under Columbia Special Products (US) as P 16769 "Duke Ellington" {Christopher & Karen Cox}. Jerry does not give us further details.
It was not unusual for CBS/Columbia to release special editions for companies who wished to use it for promotional purposes. There are quite a few of these special releases documented in Jerry Valburn's directory.
The source of the material is highly interesting. It is by no means stereo as claimed on the label. It has been copied straight from the European AFRS broadcast "Date With The Duke" # 4 with the exception of the last two titles, Emancipation Celebration and Don't Get Around Much Anymore. That part of the LP is a copy of the end of broadcast # 34. The DWTD material for broadcast # 4 came from the Treasury broadcast from 5May45 with the exception of the signature tune Take the "A" Train, which was taken from the first Treasury broadcast (of 21Apr45). The two selections from DWTD bc # 34 came from the Treasury bc from 21Jul45.
This is highly interesting because this is not original Columbia/CBS material. The original Treasury material was released on the DETS LPs # 1, 4 and 15, which are now being re-released on CD or will be in the next few years.
I hope you have not paid too much for this LP, unless you like collectors' items.
Sjef Hoefsmit

The Harlem Footwarmers

DEMS 01/2-18/1

The Harlem Footwarmers' three 1930-31 OKeh sessions have greatly confounded past discographers. Here is the data on dates and takes as found on the OKeh matrix cards; opposite the master numbers, I have noted take dispositions and original issues. Strike-outs indicate a change of take disposition.

14 October 1930
W404481-A   Mood Indigo    1st choice, rejected, master destroyed
                         OKeh 8840 pressed from dub mx. W480023-B
               (The "B" designates the second attempt at dubbing)
W404481-B   Mood Indigo           rejected, destroyed
W404481-C   Mood Indigo           2nd choice, rejected, destroyed
W404482-A   Big House Blues       rejected, destroyed
W404482-B   Big House Blues       2nd choice, destroyed
W404482-C   Big House Blues       OKeh 8836

W404483-A   Rocky Mountain Blues  1st choice, rejected, destroyed
W404483-B   Rocky Mountain Blues  2nd choice, OKeh 8836
W404483-C   Rocky Mountain Blues  rejected, destroyed

8 January 1931
W404481-D   Mood Indigo                  1st choice, destroyed
W404481-E   Mood Indigo                  2nd choice, destroyed
W404802-A   I Can't Realize You Love Me  Odeon ONY 36190,
                                         Parlophone PNY 34183
W404802-B   I Can't Realize You Love Me  2nd choice, destroyed
W404803-A   I'm So in Love with You      2nd choice, destroyed
W404803-B   I'm So in Love with You      Odeon ONY 36189,
                                         Parlophone PNY 34183
W404804-A   Rockin' in Rhythm            Okeh 8869
W404804-B   Rockin' in Rhythm            2nd choice, destroyed

The alleged Harlem Footwarmers session of 8 November 1930 is ancient misinformation dating back to Delaunay's New Hot Discography (1948), if not earlier.
While Mood Indigo is shown above as the first title recorded on 8 January 1931, this wasn't necessarily the case: The surviving OKeh files for this period, which consist of matrix cards and label copy sheets, don't disclose the sequence in which the various titles were recorded.

The title Dreamy Blues was not found in the OKeh files.
For reasons not noted, official 78 r.p.m. releases of Mood Indigo and Three Little Words were pressed from dubbed parts. The OKeh files don't explicitly state from which master takes the dubbed parts were copied, master-pressed tests are unknown to me, and metal parts are apparently non-existent in the U.S. and thus not available for inspection. That parts W480023-B and W480028-E were dubbed from test pressings of Master takes W404481-A and W404520-A is – as was discussed by me a few years ago in "Comments on Timner" [page 4, which came with Bulletin 98/3] – deduced by reference to data found on the OKeh matrix cards (see photocopies on page 19). Note that Mood Indigo remake takes -D and -E were recorded four weeks after 10Dec30, the date Mood Indigo was released on OKeh 8840.
Copies of the dubbed metal parts of Mood Indigo and Three Little Words may still exist at the E.M.I. vaults in England; these might contain inscriptions on the outer land area that identify the master takes from which the parts were dubbed.
Odeon ONY 36189 and ONY 36190 as THE NEW YORK SYNCOPATERS;
Parlophone PNY 34154 and PNY 34156 as FRANK BROWN AND HIS TOOTERS;
Parlophone PNY 36183 as THE HARLEM FOOT WARMERS.
Odeon ONY 36166 and Parlophone PNY 34156 are extremely rare discs: I don't know of anyone who owns a copy of either. The late Mr. Richard Jones generously gave me his copy of Parlophone PNY 34154. He recalled buying it new at the May Company on Wilshire Boulevard in Los Angeles about 1940-41.
Release dates. OKeh 8836: 25Nov30; 8840: 10Dec30; 8869: 25Apr31. Odeon ONY 36166: 30Nov30; ONY 36189 and ONY 36190: 15Feb31. While release dates of U.S. Parlophone issues aren't found in the company files, the discs were likely released contemporaneously with their U.S. Odeon counterparts.
Some notable 78 r.p.m. reissues. Master W404519-A was reissued 25Dec30 on OKeh 41468 as by THE HARLEM MUSIC MASTERS. Masters W404802-A/W404803-B were reissued 20oct31 on Clarion 5391-C, Harmony 1377-H and Velvetone 2455-V as by MEMPHIS HOT SHOTS (and bearing stamped transfer numbers W100549-1 and W100550-1, respectively). Masters W404482-C/W404522-B were reissued 31Aug32 on Columbia 14670-D as by THE HARLEM FOOTWARMERS.
Master W480028-E (from W404520-A) was reissued in England on Parlophone R 883 as by PHILADELPHIA MELODIANS. (Reports that Parlophone R 883 is pressed from W480028-C are in error.)
Reverses. OKeh 41468: Body and Soul (mx. W404411-D) recorded 9oct30 by LOUIS ARMSTRONG AND HIS SEBASTIAN NEW COTTON CLUB ORCHESTRA. Odeon ONY 36189: Please Don't Talk About Me When I'm Gone (W404836-B) and Odeon ONY 36190: I Surrender, Dear (W404838-A) both recorded 9Feb31by Fred Rich and His Orchestra as SAM LANIN AND HIS FAMOUS PLAYERS. Parlophone PNY 34154: And Then Your Lips Met Mine (W404551-B) and Parlophone PNY 34156: What's the Use of Living Without Love? (W404552-B) both recorded 14Nov30 by Yale Collegians as THE MUSICAL STUDENTS. English Parlophone R 883: Little Did I Know (W404572-A) recorded 6Dec30 by CASA LOMA ORCHESTRA.
Steven Lasker

Ann "Sis" Quander

DEMS 01/2-18/2

I found a highly interesting article in "78 Quarterly" # 11 by Kipp Lornell and Rohulamin Quander titled "Sis Quander, Duke's first vocalist?" The Quander family was long ago forcibly relocated to southern Maryland from the Cape Coast region of Ghana in West Africa. The first official record of the family in the US came on October 13, 1684, when Henry Adams (or Addams) executed his last will and testament that included the statement that "I give unto the said Henry Quando one flock bed...." The context of this document makes it clear that Mr Quando was a Black American.
Elizabeth Ann "Sis" Quander was born in Washington, D.C. on 27Jul1892. Precisely how Sis became involved with music, singing in particular, remains unclear. What is clear however is that Sis Quander enjoyed a secular music career that reached its apex during the late nineteen teens and into the Depression era. It was during this period when she performed with Duke Ellington and recorded four blues sides (not with Ellington but under her own name) that were issued on the Perfect and Pathé record labels.
The authors of the article turn for more information about the musical world of Ellington and Sis Quander to Mark Tucker's "The Early Years." Tucker does not mention Sis Quander who was interviewed on the first anniversary of Duke's death by Akia Quanderjordan for the Washington Afro-American. Sis stated that "My days with Duke date back to before his band joined him, before he made it big." Among her most treasured items was a small photograph. It portrayed Sis, Duke, and several other unidentified (male) musicians who, according to Sis made a record together in the early 1920s in a small recording studio in NYC just off Broadway. Sis recalled, "You know, I never did hear that recording we made that day. I can't even recall the name of it now." The possibility that Quander recorded with Ellington and some of his associates in the early 1920s remains, but there is no evidence to indicate that this session was ever captured on wax.
Sis and Duke saw each other about 1968, approximately 45 years following Duke's move to NYC. From then until his death, Ellington sent her annual greeting cards, most often in July, which Sis referred to as her "Christmas in July Cards."
Luis Contijoch

Discography on CD-ROM?

DEMS 01/2-20/1

See DEMS Bulletin 99/5-4/3

Hi Sjef, I know it is late, but I was surprised that there could be complaints regarding the format of the New DESOR. I only realised that the earlier issue was divided into 16 small volumes when I was offered one volume (1946) for $ 27.00 including postage. The physical size and weight of this updated research is irrelevant. Even if it was unmanageable which it is not.
What we have now is a priceless (ignore the cost, consider the dedication, labour, knowledge) pair of volumes, which work (my word do they work, to have did it say 16 separate sections floatingaround, flitting back and forth) when on the desk/table all is at your finger tips.
CD-ROM, beautiful, but didn't we really lose a little pleasure when CD ousted LP? The sheer joy of anticipation, leafing through the pages of books, is alone one of the disappearing pleasures of life. (Is my age showing?)
To page through the New DESOR to me, stands apart from any electronic reproduction or leaflet.
Sorry for the outburst, but arriving on the scene, thinking I was fairly knowledgeable, being shown that was not the case, then along came DESOR, and your guidance, I'm rejuvenated so as a tribute to Luciano Massagli, and Giovanni Volonté a special DESOR edition of DEMS Bulletin could be published to explain their efforts. That would add to your already enormous workload, so let us just occasionally, when we open the pages for whatever reason, say a silent thank you.
Lance Travis

Broadcasts at the Library of Congress

DEMS 01/2-20/2

Recently I surfed through the Library of Congress web-site and I found some Ellington broadcasts, which are not mentioned in any of the discographies.
The internet address is:
Select "search the catalog", select "search sonic", select
"radio broadcasts". Insert "Duke Ellington" and select "search"
Hans Kalter

I followed your instructions and I found that all these broadcasts were donated by the NBC Radio Collection. The oldest broadcast is from 30Jan42 and titled "Franklin D. Roosevelt's Diamond Jubilee birthday celebration". The selections of this broadcast are not mentioned. There is a broadcast known under the title "The President's Birthday Ball" with Duke participating, playing Pussy Willow. This broadcast is documented in DESOR 3910 in 1939 and dated for unknown reasons (to me) 28May. I hesitate to believe that this is the same recording. Especially as the announcer on DESOR 3910 says "now Duke Ellington plays one of his recent compositions for us ...Pussy Willow was recorded commercially on 20Mar39. I would like to know the selection(s) Duke played on this 30Jan42 tape.
I believe that several of these broadcasts were disc jockey programs using commercially available released recordings, for instance the 27Feb and the 18May42 broadcasts titled "Fashions in Jazz".
One of the few broadcasts from which some selections are mentioned is catalogued as "probably 1943" , duration 15 min. and the titles indicate that it is from 4Apr43, DESOR 4304, issued on LP Rarities 56.
Another broadcast carries the date of 4Apr43 and must be the same broadcast although it has a duration of 30 min.
"The Million Dollar Band" broadcast is filed on 18Jun43. DESOR 4326 and WaxWorks 43-71 have the date as 19Jun.
The "Liberty Party" #21 of 17Sep43 and the "Atlantic Spotlight" of 6May44 could be genuinely "fresh".
The MALB broadcast of 29Apr45 is documented in DESOR 4522 and WaxWorks 45-28, see also DEMS 00/3-10/3 and 01/1-13/2. The MALB broadcast of 23Sep45 is in DESOR 4566 and WaxWorks 45-71, see also DEMS 80/3-6 and 00/2-3/1. The MALB broadcast of 25Nov45 is in DESOR 4594 and WaxWorks 45-104, see also DEMS 00/2-3/1.
The "Canta Bing Crosby" broadcast of 5Aug45 seems to be an edited version of the 18Jan45 broadcast, DESOR 4505.
The Blue Note broadcasts of 30Jul52 and 13Aug52 are in DESOR 5213 and 5216 and were issued on LP Aircheck#4 and CD Bandstand 30523, see also DEMS 92/4-7.
The Blue Note broadcast of 6Aug52 is in DESOR 5215 and issued on CD Canby Records 1010, not mentioned in DEMS.
The 17Sep52 broadcast cannot have been from Cleveland. According to the two titles mentioned, I suspect that this is the ABC "Change of a Lifetime" broadcast, documented in DESOR 5218 on 27Sep52, which also cannot have been live from Cleveland, where Duke played from 19 until 25Sep52.
The 21Sep52 broadcast from the Ritz Ballroom, Conn. is probably the same as DESOR 5219. The date seems wrong though, since Duke was in Cleveland, Ohio on 21Sep.
The 20Nov52 Silver Jubilee broadcast is documented in DESOR 5223 and released on CD Jazz Unlimited 2036. The duration is indicated as 25 min., but the broadcast went from 12:05 until 12:55. Maybe the speed-switch was in a wrong position.
The 26Nov52 broadcast is documented in DESOR 5226. The duration of 10 min may well be correct, since part 1 of 2 parts is missing.
The "Music for Moderns" broadcast on 26Jun53 from the Blue Note seems to be genuinely "fresh". It contains In a Mellotone, Things Ain't What They Used to Be and Take the "A" Train. These titles do not fit with any of the broadcasts during the Blue Note stay in 1953. The only recorded broadcast that I have with these three selections is the one from 9Aug59, released on Roulette products. It is highly suspicious that there is another tape with the same "Physical item" number RGA 2494, with the same broadcast date, 26Jun53 with another title: "Let's Go Dancing", a retrospective of popular dances, which is indicated as featuring recordings by Duke Ellington and Pinetop Smith among others.
I suspect that the "All Star Parade of Bands" broadcast of 25Jul53 is the same as the Jun53 broadcast with the same title as 5320 in DESOR and issued on DETS LP # 48. This broadcast was earlier claimed to be from 17Jul53. See Jerry Valburn's article in DEMS 93/4-6.
The 11Dec53 broadcast is confirmed in DESOR 5336 as titled "Life Begins at Eighty". It is claimed (in the NBC files) to have started at 11:30 p.m. That seems a bit late for people of this age.
If anybody ever listens to these tapes, please let me know the titles. It would be of great help to identify these broadcasts.
Sjef Hoefsmit

In the same Sonic database one can choose in the main menu for Archival (unpublished) Collections. Apart from the broadcasts, I also found here some test-pressings, a.o. from the Altshuler Collection. I found Delta Serenade (9Jan34) take -5. What do you think? A typo?
Hans Kalter

Not necessarily. Some companies used to give take number -1 to the first choice and not to the chronological first recording. It is possible that the fifth recording became take -1. This does not seem to be the case here. The first choice was take -2. I guess you found a typo.
Sjef Hoefsmit

What is the correct date for the 1950 Hamburg concert?

DEMS 01/2-21/1

See DEMS 01/1-11

Finally I am able to present "the facts" regarding the Duke's concerts in Gothenburg in Jun50, which were co-sponsored by the daily newspaper "Göteborgs-Tidningen".
Through the kindness of my research partner Hans Anderson, at present living in Gothenburg, I now have Xerox copies from "Göteborgs-Posten", another daily newspaper which confirms the Duke's concerts in that city.
An ad published on 2Jun states that Duke Ellington will give 2 evening concerts, 7:00 and 9:30, at "Circus" on Monday 5Jun.
A photo caption in the same newspaper of 6Jun (page 13) gives the info that the orchestra arrived by train from Stockholm in the afternoon of 5Jun, and a review states that Billy Strayhorn was the piano player on Take the "A" Train. Other tunes performed included Mood Indigo, The Mooche, Violet Blue (feature for Hodges), Creole Love Call (sung by Kay Davis), Paradise (feature for Carney), St. Louis Blues (feature for Ray Nance) and Air Conditioned Jungle. Note that the review mentions "the concert", not "the concerts".
Hamburg, 29May50 is in "the bag": a clipping from "Hamburger Abend......" (hard to read on the Xerox) dated 30May50 found in the Duke's own scrapbook has the following heading: "Animalisch und hochtechnisch – Duke Ellington in der Musikhalle."
Then follows a review by one "S.T." in which I note such outlandish expressions as "Höllenlärm" ("Noises from Hell"). The public was alsobehaving in a nice manner – "Trampeln und gellenden Pfiffen" – so pull out your German dictionary !
And the Swiss were even more frank about it. The ad for the 2May concert, at 8:15 in "Grosser Saal" in the "Kongresshaus" in Zürich was offering "Duke Ellington und sein Negerorkester".
I suggest 30May: en route to Copenhagen by train and 7Jun: en route to Frankfurt by train, since we already know that the Duke was in Denmark on 6Jun. The date of 9Jun might well be for one or more concerts held in Germany.
Carl Hällström

We are very grateful to Carl Hällström. The perfectly confirmed concert on the 5Jun in Gotheburg solves the Ole Nielsen mystery. As explained in DEMS Bulletin 01/1-11, Ole did not believe that Duke managed to travel so fast that he could have been in Hamburg on the 5th while having concerts on the 4th in Stockholm and the 6th in Århus. We believe that the only recording that has survived from this tour came from Hamburg 29May50 and not from 5Jun50 as claimed by Olaf Syman in Jazz Journal of May97 and not from 10Jun50 as claimed in the discographies.

The updated itinerary looks like this:
May 27
Frankfurt, Althof Bau
Variety 17May p.67; FrankfurterRundschau 20May p.9 and Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 30May p.11
May 28
Hannover, Niedersachsenhalle
Hannover Presse 20, 24, 27May
May 29
Hamburg, Musikhalle
Olaf Syman letter 15Mar92 and Hamburger Abend..... 30May
May 30
May 31
Copenhagen, KB-Hallen
Erik Wiedemann, "Musik& Forskning" 87/88 #13
June 1
Copenhagen, KB-Hallen
Erik Wiedemann "M&F"
June 2
Malmö, Stadsteatern
Orkester Journalen Jul50, p.30
June 3
Stockholm, Konserthuset
concert tickets
June 4
Stockholm, Tennishallen
concert tickets
June 5
Gothenburg, Circus
Göteborgs-Posten, 6Jun p.13. Olaf Syman is wrong in his letter to Jazz Journal!
June 6
Århus, Århus-Hallen
Erik Wiedemann "M&F"
June 7
June 8
Frankfurt Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 31May p.10 and 2Jun
June 9
June 10
Hamburg, Alu-Palast
Olaf Syman letter 15Mar92 and Josef Marein in Die Zeit 15Jun p.11
June 11
Hamburg, Alu-Palast
Olaf Syman letter 15Mar92 (maybe early morning concert)
June 12
Dortmund, Capitol
Bernd Hoffmann mentioned this concert, without a specific reference
June 13
Düsseldorf, Apollo Theatre
Programme 13Jun Rheinische Post and Düsseldorfer Stadtpost 1Jun and 12Jun

Who can help us to fill in the unknown location on 9Jun and where did the band go after 13Jun?

To find out more details about this Hamburg recording, the only one which survived from the 1950 tour, I would like to ask if there is someone who can supply Xerox copies of the BFN Bulletin No. 38 as well as the BFN program schedules as printed in a Hamburg newspaper for the following period: 29May - 11Jun50?
If the date of the concert will be corrected in the New DESOR, I suggest to add this technical note: This concert must have been recorded through a direct line feed to a studio, which had a couple of 33 1/3 rpm recording machines. From this complete concert, portions were then edited into 30 minutes (or longer) program segments, which were broadcast at later dates.
Carl Hällström**

At that time I attended three concerts by the Ellington Band, the first two on one and the same day, probably 29May50. Then, after a week or two Ellington popped up again in Hamburg. Unlike the first two concerts, which were in the Musikhalle, the additional concerts – three I believe – took place in some monstrosity called the Alu-Palast. Both "Jazz Records 1942-80, vol. 6" by Nielsen and Stratemann's "DE - Day by Day" err in calling the concert site Ernst Merck Halle. I don't think it had been built then.
A look at the map seems to confirm the impossibility getting around so fast between Stockholm and Hamburg [for a concert on 5Jun], unless they flew or there were coach express trains which could get you from city to city overnight, i.e. the musicians slept on the train and arrived just in time for the concert. Or by chartered bus?
10Jun [or 5Jun] may have been the date of the broadcast, not the concert. I have a clipping from BFN Bulletin No. 38 - 1950 in which they announce that they have recorded two programs, the second of which will be broadcast on Wednesday. HaHa! [5Jun was a Monday and 10Jun was a Saturday.]
Stratemann is also wrong when he says Byas replaced Rouse. Technically speaking Rouse's replacement was Alva McCain. Byas was an added starter for the European tour.
Olaf Syman**

Sentimental Lady on Unique Jazz-UJ35.

DEMS 01/2-21/2

See DEMS 84/3-3 and 85/4-4.

One title, Sentimental Lady, was left with a question-mark. Was the date and circumstances ever revealed? I can’t see it has.
Ulf Renberg.

We are sorry, Ulf, that you have had to wait 5 years before you finally get your answer. It is from the 27Nov43 broadcast from the assembly hall of Memorial Auditorium in Buffalo through the Blue Network. The programme is titled Coca Cola Spotlight Bands # 372, which was later used for the AFRS Spotlight Bands # 217. In Benny's WaxWorks it is entry 43-181 and in the New DESOR it is session 4361.

The Last Studio Session "78" rpm standard groove recording issued.

DEMS 01/2-22/1

What was Ellington's last 10 inch 78 r.p.m. record?
Peter MacHare

Duke's last official 78 is from 1957! Cop-Out/Rock City Rock. These recordings can be found on the French CBS LP's, The Works of Duke 1956-62.
Richard Ehrenzeller

Are you sure Richard? What was the label number? I have both selections (one on each side) on a Columbia NP (45 r.p.m.) 4-40903.
Sjef Hoefsmit

When Ellington completed his Capitol Records contract he then signed with Columbia for a single album, the Rosemary Clooney album "Blue Rose". From this "LP Session" came a single 78 rpm release, catalogue number 40701 Grievin'/Sophisticated Lady. This is a very rare 78 and quite hard to come by.
After signing a long-term contract with Columbia the only 78 rpm record to be released was catalog number 40903 Cop-Out/Rock City Rock. This 78 r.p.m. issue was also issued as a 78 in Brazil on CB 2.518.
When Sjef checked my 1986 Directory of Recordings he missed the U.S. Columbia issue because, in error, it was never listed in the book.
There are three more Columbia 78's issued in the 50000 series as follows: 50014 Solitude/Mood Indigo; 50016 Stormy Weather/Sophisticated Lady (all from Feb40) and 50059 Do Nothin' till You Hear from Me/Don't Get Around Much Anymore (Nov47).
All of the above items are in my collection at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.
There are also 5 "78" releases on RCA-Victor (Ca/US) in their 420 series. Some of these may have been made in the mid to late 1950's. They are as follows. Perhaps Steven Lasker can supply us the release dates.
420-0129  Caravan/Solitude
420-0130  Mood Indigo/Sophisticated Lady
420-0131  Prelude to a Kiss/Cotton Tail
420-0132  Take the "A" Train/I Got It Bad
420-0874  Do Nothin' till You Hear from Me/Don't Get Around Much Anymore.
Jerry Valburn

I believe that all 10 Victor selections in the 420 series are recorded in 1940, '41 and '45.
Sjef Hoefsmit

Not having release dates for RCA Victors 420-0129 through 420-0132 at hand, I asked researcher James Parten about them. He reports that these belong to RCA's "Gold Standard" series and date from 1954 or 1955. He comments that U.S. RCA Victor had stopped pressing 78s by the time 447-0874 was released on 45 r.p.m., so 78 r.p.m. equivalent "420-0874" is likely non-existent.
Passion Flower and Things Ain't What They Used to Be – recordings made 3Jul41 by Johnny Hodges and His Orchestra – were re-released 25Jul56 by RCA on Groove
G-5007 (78 r.p.m.) and Groove 4G-5007 (45 r.p.m.).
Capitol 3049 was released in early 1955 according to James Parten. (All Day Long from 26Apr54 and Echo Tango from 1Sep54.)
Columbia (Hall of Fame series) 50014 and 50016 were released on 2Aug54. Columbia 50059 was released on 4Apr55.
According to the Columbia files, the last U.S. Columbia 78 r.p.m. single by Ellington was number 40903, released 22Apr57. This is a very scarce record. James Parten reports that the highest-numbered 78 r.p.m. single he has seen on U.S. Columbia is 41083 (artist: Johnny Mathis).
Parten adds that in Canada, Columbia continued to press 78 r.p.m. singles past 41083. The highest-numbered Canadian Columbia 78 he has encountered is 41489 (artist: Carl Smith), released circa September 1959. This should not be construed to mean that every Columbia 45 r.p.m. single from 4-41084 to 4-41489 was also released as a 78 in Canada: James observes that as a general rule, during this period Canadian Columbia issued only their hit singles – especially the Country and Western ones – on 78. It is thus theoretically possible but highly unlikely that Canadian Columbia issued any of Ellington's singles past 40903 on 78.
Steven Lasker

Suave Swing

DEMS 01/2-22/2

Duke played during the second part of his concert of 8Apr39 in The Hague a piece titled Suave. I guess that this is an alternate title. Can you tell me more about this tune?
Hans Kalter

This is the first time that I have heard this title. It's a pity that I wasn't there. I was too young (10 years old) when this concert took place. Maybe this is a misunderstanding from a Dukish announcement, but I do not have the faintest idea which title could have been misunderstood in this manner.
Sjef Hoefsmit

You may be right that the title is misspelled. I realised that it sounds the same as Zouave. Zouaves was the name of a regiment of military volunteers, fighting for the North in the American Civil War. There were for instance French Zouaves. I think we have to look for the origin in military circles. Do you think it could have been The Sergeant Was Shy? We should have to look in more programme notes from 1939 and find out if the number was performed more often. Maybe the Smithsonian can help.
Hans Kalter

I know that the volunteers for the guard of the Pope in Rome are called Zouaves. They are supposed to be of Swiss origin. A list with straight synonyms of "suave" is "glib, smooth, urbane, polished, unctuous, oily, voluble, flowing". In Dutch: "vriendelijk, minzaam, beleefd, aangenaam, zacht". It may be that we are looking in the wrong direction and that what we have here is another of the many rare Ellington compositions.
Sjef Hoefsmit

Zouaves. It's perhaps a little misleading to say that "there were for instance French Zouaves" as Hans does, in the sense that Zouaves are essentially French infantry regiments and their soldiers. The name derives from that of an Algerian people, and zouaves were first enlisted in the French army in 1830s, according to my dictionary. The British army parallel would be the Gurkha regiments recruited from the Nepalese people.
I didn't realise until now that zouave soldiers fought on the Northern side in the American Civil War. It is surely not at all improbable that this fact should crop up in conversation during Ellington's time in Paris in 1939 – Europe on the brink of war, Palais de Chaillot bombproof basement, etc. If it did, it is certain that the story would be of great interest to Ellington himself – Boola, Tone Parallel to the American Negro, etc. Suave/Zouave would then be a pun. It would be interesting to know when The Sergeant Was Shy was composed and first performed. (My own notes on the piece are with DESUK for publication in a forthcoming issue of "Blue Light".)
Roger Boyes

The Sergeant Was Shy was first recorded on 28Aug39.