Rock's Backpages Library Rock's Backpages

Black, Brown, Beige and Sacred: A Journey through Duke Ellington

Chris Ingham, MOJO, July 1999

IT'S HARD to overstate Duke Ellington's stature as a 20th century musician. Honoured by world leaders, respected by legit' cats and revered by jazz musicians of all styles and generations, his achievements tower over us like a musical Mount Olympus. Miles Davis once famously suggested that "all the musicians should...get down on their knees and thank Duke", while Wynton Marsalis — a kind of Branagh to Duke's Olivier — talks of Ellington's understanding "people of all classes" and his "advanced concept of art".

Total word count of piece: 2320


Becoming a member is easy. Membership gives you access to all the thousands of articles in the library.

Click here to go to Subscribe page.

Click here for academic and other group subscriptions.


Login via your library

If your local library has signed up with Rock's Backpages, please enter your card number below: