Entries by twb716

Galen Demus, Board Member

  Galen Demus, nephew of Billy Strayhorn, joined the Board of Directors for Billy Strayhorn Songs Inc., in 2005. Galen has worked in the area of jazz education, promoting the legacy of Billy Strayhorn though several music-centered initiatives. Galen started the Billy Strayhorn Jazz Education Scholarship Award in 2008 and has played a pivotal role […]

Planet D Nonet: A Salute To Strayhorn

Detroit’s Planet D Nonet, a vibrant little-big band with an expansive repertoire, explores the full-breadth of the terrain on “A Salute to Strayhorn” (Detroit Music Factory). Included are such remarkable Strayhorn masterpieces as “Smada” and “A Flower Is a Lovesome Thing,” classic collaborations with Ellington like “Such Sweet Thunder” and a few more popular songs […]

Tony Bennett-Lady Gaga, “Cheek To Cheek”

There’s no question that the singers establish a bona fide artistic partnership on “Cheek to Cheek”. Better still, Lady Gaga meets Bennett on his musical territory, not the other away around, the accompanying jazz instrumentalists underscoring the point. “Cheek to Cheek” is being released in standard and deluxe versions, the latter including 15 songs compared to […]

La Rumba is a Lovesome Thing; A Tribute to Billy Strayhorn

What would Billy Strayhorn think of La Rumba is a Lovesome Thing? It is, after all, relocated from its original big band setting into the Latin realm—to the maestro who singlehandedly transformed the sound and spirit of The Duke Ellington Orchestra for a quarter of a century, from 1942 until 1967. Superbly orchestrated by its leader Paul Carlon, […]

Love Came – The Songs of Strayhorn

Because the lyrics of so many of Billy Strayhorn’s compositions reflect love lost or not yet obtained, few vocalist have attempted to record an entire release of his songs. But singer Allan Harris is up to the challenge. One of the top male singers to emerge in the 1990’s, Allan Harris’ brilliant and innovative approach to […]

This Side of Strayhorn

“Terell Stafford’s intelligent and warm playing superbly matches the depths of Billy Strayhorn’s timeless compositions on this record. The songs may be familiar by now, but the interpretations here are far from the usual fare. Terell’s quintet approaches each work with great understanding to add new layers of musical meaning. What a treat.” — Walter […]

The Strayhorn Project

A contemporary tribute to Ellington’s indispensable writing  partner Billy Strayhorn. Don Braden and Mark Rapp’s “The Strayhorn Project”  presents celebrated Strayhorn music, as well as some lesser-known gems (from Satin Doll to Lament for Javenette) that shine brightly in the hands of Don  Braden, Mark Rapp, Gerald Clayton, Sachal Vasandani and the band including Rene  […]

Lush Life

Joe Henderson won a Grammy Award and world wide acclaim for his CD, ‘Lush Life’. Strayhorn wrote the title composition for this CD while still a teenager in Pittsburgh. Henderson shows absolute respect for Strayhorn’s material, with the help  of some fine sidemen, including Wynton Marsalis on trumpet, Stephen  Scott on piano, Christian McBride on bass, and Gregory […]

…and His Mother Called Him Bill

When Billy Strayhorn died of cancer in 1967, Duke Ellington was devastated. His closest friend and arranger had left his life full of music and memories. As a tribute, Ellington and his orchestra almost immediately began recording a tribute to Strayhorn, using the late arranger’s own compositions and charts. The album features well-known and previously unrecorded Strayhorn tunes that showcased his […]

We’ll Be Together Again

Lena Horne returned to the stage to perform for the New York JVC Jazz Festival. She dedicated her performance to her late soulmate, Billy Strayhorn. She was so energized as a result of this outing that she agreed to go into the studio and cut a new CD; again a tribute to her closest friend […]