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Three Suites

Duke Ellington Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 12.00
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Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought


Product Details


1. The Nutcracker Suite: Overture
2. The Nutcracker Suite: Toot Toot Tootie Toot (Dance Of The Reed-Pipes)
3. The Nutcracker Suite: Peanut Brittle Brigade (March)
4. The Nutcracker Suite: Sugar Rum Cherry (Dance Of The Sugar-Plum Fairy)
5. The Nutcracker Suite: Entr'acte
6. The Nutcracker Suite: The Volga Vouty (Russian Dance)
7. The Nutcracker Suite: Chinoiserie (Chinese Dance)
8. The Nutcracker Suite: Danse Of The Floreadores (Waltz Of The Flowers)
9. The Nutcracker Suite: Arabesque Cookie (Arabian Dance)
10. Peer Gynt Suite Nos 1 And 2: Morning Mood
11. Peer Gynt Suite Nos 1 And 2: In The Hall Of The Mountain King
12. Peer Gynt Suite Nos 1 And 2: Solvejg's Song
13. Peer Gynt Suite Nos 1 And 2: Ase's Death
14. Peer Gynt Suite Nos 1 And 2: Anitra's Dance
15. SuiteThursday: Misfit Blues
16. SuiteThursday: Schwiphti
17. SuiteThursday: Zweet Zurzday
18. SuiteThursday: Lay-By

Product Description

Product Description

In this master adaptation, Duke puts his famous jazzy touch on classics by Tchaikovsky ( Nutcracker Suite ), Grieg ( Peer Gynt Suites ) and John Steinbeck's engaging novel, Sweet Thursday , with his original composition of Zweet Zurzday . Also includes Toot Toot Tootie Toot (Dance of the Red-Pipes); Sugar-Rum Cherry (Dance of the Sugar-Plum Fairy); In the Hall of the Mountain King; Arabesque Cookie (Arabian Dance); Morning Mood; Anitra's Dance , and much more!

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Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
I owned this record (on vinyl) years ago. I bought it because I was/am an Ellington fan and had never heard of Ellington doing a version of Nutcracker Suite. I was blown away when I heard it! It seemed like a jewel in Ellington's repetoire: sheer genius, jumpin' jazz, and a tribute to P. I.Tchaikovsky that does his work very hot justice. Alas, an Evil Ex-Wife made off with my copy and then I had to wonder: Why was such a splendid piece of work so hard to find? I think it was on the Nonesuch label & that might explain it. But I'm Very Glad to have found this CD! Now my Christmases can Cook as in days of yore! Don't pass this up!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A 'Must Have' Feb. 14 2010
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
If you love Jazz, if you love Classical or Christmas music, heck if you love music period, you'll love The Dukes rendition of Tchaikovsky's 'Nut Cracker Suite', Grieg's 'Peer Gynt Suite" and his own set of suites, 'Suite Thursday (written with Billy Strayhorn). Some of the tunes you will recognize immediately and others will have you checking the liner notes and saying "Oh yeah!". Slight changes and fantastic arrangements will make your toes tap and your hips sway. His wordplay on the jacket for each Tchaikovsky suite will have you smiling. His take on the "Peer Gynt Suite" is just as moody as the original with of course a Jazz twist and his own suite is Pure Duke. Big Band Jazz takes on Symphonic masterpieces.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A genius re-imagines genius Dec 30 2003
Format:Audio CD
Brilliant, glorious music--all of it, although I agree with those who have come to feel that the Ellington/Strayhorn version of "The Nutcracker Suite," in particular, is an all-too-often-buried treasure that no Christmas season should be without (and if you can ignore it for the rest of the year, you have more willpower than I). What happens to Tchaikovsky's marvellous music--and Grieg's, too--in these hands is creative homage of the highest order: the music is re-imagined from the inside, in wholly jazz terms, in a way that simultaneously illuminates and completely reconceives the original. What Balanchine did for Tchaikovsky and Stravinsky in dance, Ellington here does for Tchaikovsky and Grieg in another realm of music, and leaves us with works that deserve to be every bit as loved and celebrated as their older and better-known prototypes. And to top it all off, you get Ellington and Strayhorn's own superb "Suite Thursday." Listen and rejoice!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.9 out of 5 stars  35 reviews
82 of 87 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exquisite and Extremely Essential Ellington Nov. 2 2001
By Samuel Chell - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
As gratifying as it is to see Duke Ellington receiving his due (and I recall many arguments with musicians back in the 70s about Ellington's being a "sloppy," "inferior" band compared to Kenton, Maynard, Basie), it appears that many listeners still don't "get it" when it comes to jazz' greatest Maestro. I notice that the top 8 best-selling Ellington albums are collections of his piano playing or "greatest hits" (Satin Doll, A Train, etc.). But Ellington's genius is best appreciated in his orchestral compositions, his balancing of the composer's intentions with his band members' inventions, and his ability to write for the performer of the instrument, not merely the instrument itself.
Take one brief movement of The Nutcracker Suite--the "Entr'act." Listen to it several times, and then just simply marvel. We hear the composer's orchestral textures, we hear the colorful voices of no less than 4 different soloists, we hear nuanced dynamics, and finally we experience a collaborative celebration as much a product of the individual parts as their sum meaning. And all of this occurs in approximately 60 seconds! Now compare what you've just heard to the formulaic, 3-section, 2-dimensional dyanamics that characterize virtually any other big band.
This collection is not only indispensable but an unbeatable value. The order of the 3 suites--Nutcracker, Peer Gynt, Suite Thursday--probably reflects their order of artistic merit. What's unfortunate about this edition is that consumers searching for Ellington's "Nutcracker" may not locate it due to the unlikely title, "Three Suites." But make no mistake about it. This Nutcracker is no novelty project, no mere "jazzing up" of the classics. Ellington comes at the piece as another jazz artist might approach a Gershwin or Cole Porter standard. The result is a "re-visioning" that exposes Ellington's inimitable genius without dismissing Tchaikowsky's.
42 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Twinkles like lights on a string & the stars in the sky Nov. 26 2001
By Michael St John - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Every year after Thanksgiving, this is one of the very first Christmas albums I play to put me in the spirit. (This year it went on second only to Johnny Mathis.) His "Nutcracker Suite" is NOT just some "jazzin' the classics" campy fun: a theme, some swinging solos, return to theme, and out. No, nothing of the kind. Ellington & Strayhorn carefully imagined these sophisticated arrangements that remain quite faithful to Tchaikovsky's music, but they bring out the most evocative, new colors and rhythms in the music so you feel just like you're hearing the originals in a whole new light.

The five samples Amazon currently provides will give a good flavor of what's happening--"Sugar Rum Cherry" is a particular favorite--but I think the program really peaks with the last few pieces of the suite. "Arabesque Cookie" and "Chinoiserie" are truly sublime.
The "Peer Gynt" and "Suite Thursday" sections may be of less interest--but, honestly, who cares? You're going to get this, and love it, because of "The Nutcracker Suite." Those nine tracks by themselves are worth every penny. I hope that someday soon Sony will redesign the cover and print THE NUTCRACKER prominently on the front, so that more holiday shoppers will be drawn to the disc. Not only is this "Nutcracker" one of my most favorite holiday recordings, but I think it's one of the best things Ellington & Strayhorn ever did. I wish everyone could hear it.
19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Genius of the Duke Dec 18 2002
By eye flies - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This is an astonishingly beautiful collection. What Ellington does with Tchaikovsky and Grieg is truly a work of genius. An understated effort; this album is so fluidly listenable, that it requires repeated listening to fully appreciate the subtleties of these very sophisticated arrangements. But as complex as the Duke's harmonic approach is, the real star of this show is the beauty of the music itself. Anyone with an appreciation for the music of Ellington cannot go wrong with this swinging, jazzy, georgeous album.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful...Awesome! Dec 1 1999
By Laura Ruiz - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I first purchased this CD about 5 years ago and it's been a favorite ever since.
As a classical musician married to a jazz musician I was really curious about what Duke Ellington would do with the Nutcracker Suite.
All I can say is that it's absolutely fabulous and wonderful! We need to see the ABT dance to this version someday!
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars swinging and sexy Dec 16 2000
By "johnnyzhivago" - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This a no brainer. Do you really need to read a review of this cd? Stop a second and put on your thinking cap. Duke Ellington plays Tchaikovsky. I play this cd at my Christmas party every year and you should see my guests groove out to this. It's amazing how swinging and sexy the Nutcracker Suite can sound. "Sugar Rum Cherry" (Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy) sounds like strip tease music. I was down to my boxer shorts before my mother walked into the living room. The other 2 suites aren't as festive sounding but I still play them at my Kwanza party. In fact I play this cd long after the holidays have passed. A real gem!
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