Ella and Duke at The Cote D'Azur

Album review
Ella and Duke at The Cote D'Azur

Ella and Duke

Ella and Duke at The Cote D'Azur

Label: Mosaic
Media: LP
Genre: Jazz
Ratings:



In 1966 Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington travelled to Antibes for a four-night stint that was recorded and released as two separate titles: Ella & Duke at The Cote D’Azur, which juxtaposes tunes between them—with either the Ellington band or the Jimmy Jones trio accompanying Fitzgerald’s numbers—and Soul Call, which is all Duke. Mosaic’s set packages them together, and sticks to the original material as released by producer Norman Granz. Accompanied by his cracker-jack ensemble, the Ellington numbers are almost uniformly excellent. And disc three, which unwinds with tunes like “La Plus Belle Africaine,” is a treat. The Fitzgerald tracks, though sung with plenty of gusto and a rare looseness, are not as fully satisfying. There’s more scat singing than I prefer, and at this point her voice had become huskier, though she does show wonderful tenderness on “Misty,” “How Long Has This Been Going On,” and “The More I See You.” Sound is well balanced and tonally rich, with good bass definition and an impressive dynamic bounce. When the Ellington band is playing full-on the sound can get a bit thick, but when things scale back the recording exhibits a nice feeling of air, dimensionality, and focus. 

More Info

Contributors:
  • primary artist, Ella and Duke
Purchase:
  • LP

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