Solitude – 1952

Duke Ellington Orchestra


A beautiful version of an Ellington classic

Duke Ellington composed the haunting ballad “Solitude” in 1934 and it immediately became a standard.

Ellington reworked the song’s arrangement many times through the years.

On this version from 1952, filmed as a Snader Transcription for television, “Solitude” begins with two trombonists and baritonist Harry Carney sharing the melody for the first half-chorus.

Carney with his magnificent sound takes the next eight bars before the Ellington ensemble finishes the chorus.

The remainder of the piece is a feature for the underrated singer Jimmy Grissom (heard at his best on this performance) who is accompanied by some colorful and uniquely Ellingtonian ensembles colors from the horns.

-Scott Yanow

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