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Duke By Terry Teachout

Duke by Terry Teachout

New RRP £25.00
Condition - Very Good
6 in stock


The story of the man who became a music legend.

Duke Summary

Duke: A Life of Duke Ellington by Terry Teachout

Edward Kennedy 'Duke' Ellington was arguably the greatest jazz composer of the twentieth century - and an impenetrably enigmatic personality whom no one, not even his closest friends, claimed to understand. His music, too, was powerful and entirely original. Andre Previn compared him to Stravinsky and Prokofiev, Percy Grainger to Bach and Delius. But in fact he was very much his own man. The grandson of a slave, Ellington dropped out of high school to become a musical showman of incomparable suavity, as comfortable in Carnegie Hall as in the nightclubs where he honed his famous style. When he raised his fingers, the music that blazed out had its own unique richness and range. He wrote hundreds of compositions, many of which remain beloved standards, and sought inspiration in an endless string of transient lovers, concealing himself behind a smiling mask of flowery language and ironic charm. In this revealing biography, Terry Teachout skillfully peels away the countless layers of Ellington's evasion to tell the unvarnished truth about a creative genius and musical pioneer

Duke Reviews

"Mr Teachout adroitly chronicles how Ellington coaxed from his ensemble such timeless hits as "Mood Indigo". And he adeptly evokes the personalities of the ducal band." The Economist "Drawing on candid, unpublished interviews, Teachout tells a compelling story." Choice Magazine "Terry Teachout [ - ] chronicles this life in meticulous detail - probably gets as close to the Duke as we'll ever get." The Times "This impeccably written and researched tome gives us vivid glimpses of the real man behind the mask." Record Collector "There are dozens of books about Ellington, this is among the most remarkable." Mojo "He keeps his psychoanalysis within safe limits; he contextualises historically without sounding contrived, and honours his subject's musical achievements through just the right amount of close analysis." Scotsman Magazine "'Reviewers appreciate his ability to convey the power of Ellington's music - Teachout both 'clearly elucidates Ellington's mastery as a composer' and also provides an 'impressively lucid, compact narrative.'" The Oldie "Excellent, revelatory and, with eighty-one pages of source notes, copiously documented book." TLS

About Terry Teachout

Terry Teachout is the drama critic for The Wall Street Journal. He blogs about the arts at His previous books include Pops: The Wonderful World of Louis Armstrong, All in the Dances: A Brief Life of George Balanchine, The Skeptic: A Life of H.L. Mencken, and A Terry Teachout Reader. A trained musician who has played jazz professionally, he has also written two plays, Satchmo at the Waldorf and Breaking and Entering, and the libretti for three operas by Paul Moravec, The Letter, Danse Russe, and The King's Man.

Additional information

Duke: A Life of Duke Ellington by Terry Teachout
Used - Very Good
Biteback Publishing
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us

Customer Reviews - Duke