Stockholm 4 Nov. 1969, 1st concert

lawrence brown

Lawrence Brown plays Serenade To Sweden

When Duke Ellington & his Orchestra arrived in Sweden on Nov. 4, 1969 it was nearly three years after the previous visit in January 1967. In the mean-time some important changes in the band’s personnell had taken place in that Ambrose Jackson and Rolf Ericson were now part of the  trumpet section (at least temporarily), Herbie Jones gone. Buster Cooper was gone as well, leaving the trombone section with Lawrence Brown and Chuck Connors. Jimmy Hamilton had left, replaced by Harold Ashby and Norris Turney had been added to the saxophone section, making it six pieces strong. Victor Gaskin was new on bass and Wild Bill Davis and Tony Watkins had been added. These new musicians partly changed the sound of the band in that Norris Turney apart from playing reeds also played flute, which had hitherto been rare in the Ellington band. Harold Ashby added a new and easily recognizable tenor sound, but Jimmy Hamilton’s role on clarinet was never possible to be filled again, but in the band’s remaining years, Russell Procope, with his altogether different style, seemed to get more solo space.

The concert program did not include any new numbers except Come Off The Veldt, which was a feature number for Rufus Jones on drums. Duke probably focussed more on the 2nd Sacred Concert which was to be performed two days later in the Gustav Vasa church. One number from 1936, Black Butterfly, was however one of the high points with Johnny Hodges in solo action.The complete program, which you will find in the Goodies Room is as follows:

*C-Jam Blues*Kinda Dukish & Rockin’ In Rhythm*Serenade To Sweden*Take The A Train*Up Jump*El Gato*Black Butterfly*Things Ain’tWhat They Used To Be*Don’t Get Around Much Anymore*Medey*Sophisticated Lady*It Don’t Mean A Thing*Come Off The Veldt*Satin Doll*

It Don’t Mean A Thing is a bass solo, aka The African Loudspeaker, by Victor Gaskin.

We hope you will enjoy listening to this concert!

By duke00

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