Thelonious Monk records ‘Thelonious Monk Plays Duke Ellington’ for Riverside (1955)

‘Thelonious Monk Plays Duke Ellington’ is an album by Monk playing well-known songs by Ellington, recorded July 21 and 27, 1955 and released the same year by Riverside.

Track listing : . 1.It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing) (Duke Ellington, Irving Mills) – 04:38 . 2. Sophisticated Lady (Duke Ellington, Irving Mills, Mitchell Parish) – 04:27 . 3.I Got It Bad and That Ain’t Good (Duke Ellington, Paul Francis Webster) – 05:52 . 4.Black and Tan Fantasy (Duke Ellington, Bubber Miley) – 03:24 . 5.Mood Indigo (Duke Ellington, Barney Bigard, Irving Mills) – 03:13 . 6.I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart (Duke Ellington, Irving Mills, Henry Nemo, John Redmond) – 05:40 . 7.Solitude (Duke Ellington, Eddie DeLange, Irving Mills) – 03:42 . 8.Caravan (Duke Ellington, Irving Mills, Juan Tizol) – 05:55 .

Musicians : . Thelonious Monk – piano . Oscar Pettiford – bass . Kenny Clarke – drums .

Production . Produced by Orrin Keepnews . Rudy Van Gelder – Engineer .

Recorded July 21 and 27, 1955 at Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Hackensack, NJ .

Released in 1955 by Riverside.

(Source Official Website)

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PopMatters
Implausible, yet easy to believe that only a year later, Monk dropped Brilliant Corners, the title track alone so intricate and demanding that it frustrated the very capable cast of characters assembled to tackle it (notably Sonny Rollins, who was no stranger to the woodshed […]

All About Jazz
Ironically, in the attempt to make Monk more accessible, Thelonious Monk Plays Duke Ellington only obscures what makes Monk so captivating in the first place. Although these renditions are pleasant, one longs for an oddity like “Straight, No Chaser” or “Hackensack” to shake things up. […]

allmusic
“Caravan” is a gem as Clarke’s sinuous trapwork becomes a perfect foil for Pettiford’s buoyant basslines. It also reels in Monk’s animated keyboard antics. Plays Duke Ellington is a recommended title for all dimension of jazz enthusiast. However, Monk and Ellington aficionados may rate it slightly higher. […]

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