ELLINGTON 2008 - Logo

75 Years On – The Duke in London
ELLINGTON 2008
THE GREAT LONDON
CONFERENCE

The 20th Duke Ellington International Conference
Bloomsbury, WC1
May 22nd - 26th 2008

SHOP
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A Souvenir of the Music at Ellington 2008

An album recorded during the Conference, a double CD playing for over 2 1/2 hours.

Unsolicited testimony on the release:-

  • "80 minutes of two trombones blasting away? I hated the idea!! But it's great!! And the sound is superb!!!" (On the first disc, featuring Ellington Alumni)

  • "The double-album from the memorable 2008 conference is really wonderful and better than even the highest expectations would dare to aspire to. Such splendid music, such exitement and atmosphere - you feel like floating 2 feet above the ground."

Buy yours now... Only £14 UK, or £16 overseas.

Ellington 2008 Souvenir Double CD - UK - £14

Ellington 2008 Souvenir Double CD - Overseas - £16

Ellington alumni Buster Cooper, John Lamb, and Art Baron are all featured on Disc One, which largely comprises music from pianist Brian Priestley's opening session of our Festival on Spring Bank Holiday Monday, where he led a sextet completed by Frank Griffith and Dave Barry. Some commonly heard and some unusual things were played, including Britt and Butter Blues, La Plus Belle Africaine, Johnny Hodges' Parachute Jump, and Ben Webster's Love's Away.

It was a great honour to welcome the three Ellington band-members to the Conference, to meet them, and to hear them all play. Their contribution to the event was huge.

Have a Listen - MP3 Samples

Mood Indigo La Plus Belle Africaine In a Mellotone
Yearning for Love Oclupaca Echoes of the Jungle

A Souvenir of the Music at Ellington 2008

A Souvenir of the Music at Ellington 2008

The last two tracks on the first disc can be seen as "extras" featuring the alumni playing with other bands during the conference. Buster is heard again featured on Pussy Willow in the second disc, as is Art sitting in with KINDA DUKISH's trombones.

Disc Two, then, presents performances from five mainly semi-pro UK bands, playing a wide variety of Ellingtonia including relative or great rarities in performance such as Buffet Flat, You Gave Me the Gate, Yearning for Love, Oclupaca, Portrait of Louis Armstrong and Echoes of the Jungle. Along with the more often heard pieces, 20 in all.

And, especially for the earlier-written items it's great to hear these works in highly detailed, stereo, recordings.

Detailed Notes are included. AP

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Add the appropriate option to your basket (add multiple times for more than one copy, and see our remaining other items below), and then check out.

Ellington 2008 Souvenir Double CD - UK - £14

Ellington 2008 Souvenir Double CD - Overseas - £16

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Cheque

Please send your order with a pound sterling cheque made payable to "ELLINGTON 2008" to:-

Ellington 2008
38 Thurlestone Avenue
London
N12 0LP
UK

Bank Transfer

Please send your order to us. Our bank account details are as follows:-

Bank : Co-operative
Address : P.O. Box 101, 1 Balloon Street, Manchester, M60 4EP, UK (head office)
Account name : Ellington 2008
SWIFT/BIC : CPBKGB22
IBAN : GB54CPBK08929965262582


OTHER ITEMS

Duke Ellington in London 1958 Double CDs

Ellington 2008 Duke Ellington in London 1958 Double CD.

50 Years on: the Ellington Band captured in concert in London in 1958. Essential, and only previously available on a very limited edition LP issue for Ellington '88. £14 inc. shipping anywhere each.

We have at best one or two of these remaining. Please contact us to check before ordering.

Ellington 1958 Double CD - £14

Click here to download the Album Notes (PDF).


Claire Gordon's My Unforgettable Jazz Friends

"My Unforgettable Jazz Friends"

Wonderful book of reminiscences. Special price for the UK.

Many shared Claire's disappointment when her book failed to arrive during the Conference. We have it now in a very limited quantity.

"She was Duke Ellington's band secretary, married songwriter Irving Gordon ("Unforgettable"), and was a friend of Norman Granz - the list goes on. She has written about the people she knew with a light touch and a smile. Through her eyes, a picture is drawn of this jazz era - the way it was in the 1930's and 1940's (and onward) in the United States."

Hardback. 295+pp.

£23 in the UK. £26 to the rest of Europe. £29 to the rest of the world.

My Unforgettable Jazz Friends - UK shipping - £23

My Unforgettable Jazz Friends - European shipping - £26

My Unforgettable Jazz Friends - World-wide shipping - £29



T-shirts

Ellington 2008 T-shirt.

High quality cotton T-shirts, in XL and XXL sizes only. £14 inc. shipping anywhere each.

Cotton T-shirt - XL - £14

Cotton T-shirt - XXL - £14


Pens

Ellington 2008 Pen.

High quality ball-point pens (blue ink, refillable). £3.50 inc. shipping anywhere each.

Ball-point pen - £3.50


Programmes

Ellington 2008 Souvenir Programme.

12-page A4 Souvenir Programmes. £3 inc. shipping anywhere each.

Souvenir Programme - £3

Click here to download the Programme Notes (PDF).



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Ellington 2008 Shop

Donate to Ellington 2008

Ellington 2008 comprised Four Full Festival Days and a reception on the night before.

Programme ~ Venues ~ About ~ Contact ~ Links

Duke Ellington in the Early 1930s.

ELLINGTON 2008

To Celebrate Duke Ellington's Life and Works in the company of other fans and aficionados we put on this International Duke Ellington Conference, the first to be Held in London.

The four-day festival took place in Bloomsbury in central London in late May 2008. The 20th Ellington Conference (the first for four years, and the first in Britain since 1997), it ran from Thursday evening May 22nd till the evening of Holiday Monday May 26th.

After the reception on the first night, there were Three Full Days of Daytime Conferencing & Evening Concerting, and on Bank Holiday Monday, an All Day Jazz Festival featuring the Best of British Jazz and three Ellington Alumni.

On behalf of my fellow organisers listed below, I would like to thank everyone who made the event what it was and especially the Speakers, all of whom gave of their time and energy freely to the Conference.

Antony Pepper, Organiser, Ellington 2008
Derek Else Music
Victor Lawrance Finances
Leonard Weinreich Logo/Programme Design

(Picture: Duke Ellington in the Early 1930s.)


DONATE TO ELLINGTON 2008
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As is not unusual for these events in their immediate aftermaths, we are suffering a loss. We hope to make this up with the aid of sales and donations. We have already received some generous gifts, and we appreciate them. Ellington 2008 is not for profit relying on Bookings in the main, with donations providing welcome extra support.

Whether or not you made it to the event in May, you can donate to us using the Paypal link below. Click the button and enter the amount you would like to donate on the next page.

Pay securely with Paypal. Donate to Ellington 2008

Alternatively, you can send us a donation by post or bank transfer.

Please send a pound sterling cheque made payable to "ELLINGTON 2008" to:-

Ellington 2008
38 Thurlestone Avenue
London
N12 0LP
UK

Our bank account details are as follows:-

Bank : Co-operative
Address : P.O. Box 101, 1 Balloon Street, Manchester, M60 4EP, UK (head office)
Account name : Ellington 2008
SWIFT/BIC : CPBKGB22
IBAN : GB54CPBK08929965262582

Thank you.

Institutional Donations Received

We acknowledge and thank the following:-

DUKE 2008 (DESUK)
DEMS
DESS
DESUK
TDES, Inc.



PROGRAMME
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Ellington 2008 consisted of Concerts and a daytime Conference. Tickets were available for the whole event, for individual days, or for individual concerts.

THE CONCERTS ~ "THE BEST OF BRITISH PLAY ELLINGTON"

Four days - six concerts - twelve bands, with The Ellingtonians sitting in.

Hear the authentic sounds of the five decade career of Duke Ellington and his Orchestra, and the most innovative reinterpretations of his styles and music, played in concert by the best jazz musicians in Britain, with three members of the original Orchestra as guests.

THE ELLINGTONIANS : ART BARON (trombone) ~ BUSTER COOPER (trombone) ~ JOHN LAMB (bass).
MAY 23rd, 24th & 25th
EVENING CONCERTS

(All at the Royal National Hotel)

To complement our daytime Conference programme, three concerts featuring the best of British jazz talent.
CONCERT 1
FRIDAY EVENING MAY 23rd
7 pm


A chance to hear two of Britain's finest pianists in one remarkable and contrasting concert.

JOHN LAW : Unique Ellington interpreter playing mainly solo piano, with Ellingtonians John Lamb bass and Art Baron trombone as guests.
- & -
MICHAEL GARRICK ORCHESTRA : Big Band led by Britain's premiere jazz composer and arranger. Including the premiere of Garrick's major new suite, A Life of Duke.
CONCERT 2
SATURDAY EVENING MAY 24th
7 pm


Hear two fine regional English Ellington repertory bands in rare London appearances. Each played unusually performed works, with features for the Ellingtonians.

KINDA DUKISH : Midlands Big Band led by Mike Fletcher, selecting from the full range of Ellingtonia.
- & -
HARMONY IN HARLEM : Michael Kilpatrick’s Cambridge Big Band, playing authentic charts from the late '30s and early '40s.
CONCERT 3
SUNDAY EVENING MAY 25th
7 pm


A swinging end to the first three days, accompanying our Banquet.

ELLINGTONIA : An excellent West Country octet, plus singer, led by saxophonist Ian Wellens.
- & -
VO-DE-O-DO ORCHESTRA : 11 pieces lovingly echoing '20s sounds under the direction of David Jones.
MAY 26th
BANK HOLIDAY MONDAY ALL DAY ~ "FESTIVAL SESSION"
11.30 am - 11.30 pm
(at the Royal National Hotel)

A stunning climax to Ellington 2008 - six bands in three concerts over twelve hours.
CONCERT 4
MONDAY MAY 26th
11.30 am - 3 pm


The First two bands of the day.

BRIAN PRIESTLEY & THE ELLINGTONIANS : Six-piece feature for Art Baron and Buster Cooper trombones and John Lamb bass. A unique chance to hear three members of the Ellington orchestra play together, with guests Frank Griffith reeds and Dave Barry drums, in a group led by the well-known pianist, scholar and broadcaster.
- & -
HARLEM JAZZ ORCHESTRA : A fine big band from Birmingham concentrating on the '20s and '30s.
CONCERT 5
MONDAY MAY 26th
3.30 - 7 pm


The Middle two bands of the day.

MARTIN LITTON & VAL WISEMAN : Six-piece led from the piano by one of the best pianists in the country with superb Val Wiseman singing Ellington's rich but rarely performed vocal repertoire.
- & -
GUILDHALL JAZZ BAND : Arguably, the best student Big Band in the country. Martin Hathaway leads, and the programme will include The Queen's Suite which Ellington wrote with Billy Strayhorn after meeting QEII on his visit to Britain in 1958.
CONCERT 6
MONDAY MAY 26th
7.30 - 11.30 pm


The Final two bands of the day, and of Ellington 2008.

ALAN BARNES & DAVID NEWTON : Reeds and piano duo - two of Britain's finest exponents of their instruments exploring and re-examining Ellingtonia.
- & -
ECHOES OF ELLINGTON (9.30 pm) : Pete Long's superb Ellington repertory- (and-more) Big Band features Newport '56 including the Newport Festival Suite "Jeep's Blues" and the "Crescendo in Blue".

THE CONFERENCE ~ "THE DUKE IN LONDON"

One Conference - more than a dozen presenters - three days. Presentations by scholars & internationally reputed authorities on Ellington and his works, with The Ellingtonians as our honoured guests.

THE ELLINGTONIANS : ART BARON (trombone) ~ BUSTER COOPER (trombone) ~ JOHN LAMB (bass).
THURSDAY MAY 22nd
PRE-CONFERENCE RECEPTION

(at the Tavistock Hotel, 6 - 10 pm)

A reception with finger buffet for all our delegates. Conference Registration open from 6 pm.

A chance to mingle, meet old friends and make new ones.
FRIDAY MAY 23rd
DAY 1 - CONFERENCE


MORNING (at Mary Ward House, 9.45 am - 12.30 pm)
~ BRIAN PRIESTLEY introduces THE ELLINGTONIANS and our other honoured guests.
~ MICHAEL POINTON : Keynote Address : Ellington Tours the UK - 1933, 1948 and 1958.
~ KEN STEINER : Wild Throng Dances Madly in Cellar Club - The Washingtonians 1923-1927.
> (Ken was unable to attend in person; his presentation was taken by Steven Lasker.)

AFTERNOON (at Mary Ward House, 2 - 5 pm)
~ THE ELLINGTONIANS : Reminiscing in Conversation.
~ EARL OKIN : Duke Writes for Orchestra, But his Real Instrument is the Piano.
~ HARVEY COHEN : Duke Ellington in his Own Words.

Including CONCERT 1 (details as above; at the Royal National Hotel, 7 pm)
~ JOHN LAW : Mainly solo piano by one of Britain's finest Ellington interpreters, with Ellingtonian John Lamb bass as guest.
~ MICHAEL GARRICK ORCHESTRA : Big Band led by Britain's premiere jazz composer and arranger.
SATURDAY MAY 24th
DAY 2 - CONFERENCE


MORNING (at Mary Ward House, 9.45 am - 12.30 pm)
~ BOB & PUG WILBER : Essentially Ellington.
~ BJARNE BUSK : European Interpretations of Ellington 1925-1939.
~ ANDREW HOMZY : The University of Duke Ellington.

AFTERNOON (at Mary Ward House, 2 - 5 pm)
~ PETER CASWELL : Panel Discussion : UK Reminiscences of the 1958 Tour.
~ ARNE NEEGAARD : The Far East Suite and Tour - Far from Duke's Fairy Tale Version.
~ STEVEN LASKER : New Research on Ivie Anderson / Newly Discovered Ellington Recordings.

Including CONCERT 2 (details as above; at the Royal National Hotel, 7 pm)
~ KINDA DUKISH : Big Band from the Midlands.
~ HARMONY IN HARLEM : Big Band from Cambridge.
SUNDAY MAY 25th
DAY 3 - CONFERENCE


MORNING (at Mary Ward House, 9.45 am - 12.30 pm)
~ FRANK GRIFFITH : The Popular Side of Duke Ellington.
~ BRIAN PRIESTLEY : The Inspiration of Place (Or Not).
~ BILL SAXONIS : Ellington's Sophisticated Folk Music.

AFTERNOON (at Mary Ward House, 2 - 5 pm)
~ JOHN FASS MORTON : The Backstory to Newport '56.
> (John was unable to attend in person; his presentation was taken by Ted Hudson.)
~ CHRIS HOWES : My People - Just Who Were Duke's People?
~ IAN WELLENS : 14 Into Eight Does Go (introduction to Evening Concert by ELLINGTONIA).

Including CONCERT 3 (at the Royal National Hotel, 7 pm)
~ ELLINGTONIA : West Country octet, plus singer, led by Ian Wellens.
~ VO-DE-O-DO ORCHESTRA : 11-piece late '20s-style band.
BANK HOLIDAY MONDAY MAY 26th
DAY 4 - "FESTIVAL SESSION"
11.30 am - 11.30 pm
(at the Royal National Hotel)

Don't forget this final day - six bands in three concerts over twelve hours! See THE CONCERTS.


ABOUT ELLINGTON IN THE UK &
THE INTERNATIONAL ELLINGTON CONFERENCES
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In 1933, Duke Ellington and his Famous Orchestra made their first trip to Europe. And it was in Britain that Ellington (1899-1974) and the band landed, before commencing a six-week tour where they were met with rapturous appreciation. They opened at London's Palladium in June.

On the 75th Anniversary, we bring the spirit of the life and music of Duke Ellington back to London.

2008 is also the 60th Anniversary of Ellington's return trip in 1948 (with Ray Nance and Kay Davis) and the 50th Anniversary of the band's return in 1958. All three anniversaries will be marked during ELLINGTON 2008.

The Duke Ellington International Conferences were founded in the early 1980s by a group of people in all walks of life united by their interest in the Duke. They are not-for-profit and are organised by fans around the world. From then until the year 2000 an annual Conference was a highlight of the year for many Ellington fans from all around the world. Over the years the movement has grown into a large and growing informal family of those who have attended the Conferences, which have taken place in America, Canada, Denmark, Sweden and on three occasions in the UK.

Logo - DUKE 2008

ELLINGTON 2008 was to be the flagship event of DUKE 2008 - a nationwide celebration in this Triple Anniversary Year. Click the logo for more.

Please forward to anyone you think would be interested. If you are involved in preparing any kind of music or social periodical please include details with a link to this page. Click here to open your email client to send this page to someone.


VENUES
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ELLINGTON 2008 spanned four full days (Friday May 23rd - Monday 26th), and on the evening before (Thursday May 22nd), a drinks reception and finger buffet was held from 6 pm.

Mary Ward House - our daytime venue.

The daytime Programme featured papers, presentations, panels and discussion over three days (Friday 23rd - Sunday May 25th). Ellington alumni and others who knew him participated. Each evening there was a concert, "The Best of British Play Ellington," with alumni as guests.

Finally, on the Spring Bank Holiday Monday May 26th, there was an amazing one-day Ellington Festival featuring more of the best in UK jazz talent honoring the Duke with their playing, again with alumni playing.

The venues were close to one another in Bloomsbury, around Tavistock Square in the centre of London.

(Picture: Mary Ward House - our daytime Venue.)

Thursday Evening: Reception with finger buffet at the Tavistock Hotel, Tavistock Square, WC1H 9EU (from 6 pm).

Friday - Saturday - Sunday: Daytime Conference at Mary Ward House, Tavistock Place, WC1H 9SN;
Evening Concerts at the Royal National Hotel, Bedford Way, WC1H 0DG.

Monday: all-day Festival Session at the Royal National Hotel, access from Woburn Place, WC1H 0DG.

Russell Square Underground (on a direct line from Heathrow airport) as well as Euston, Kings Cross and St. Pancras Mainline and St. Pancras International (Eurostar) stations are within easy reach.

A map of the area can be seen here. Zoom out to see the wider area.

The red circle on the map marks the location of Mary Ward House (a Grade 1 Listed Building, dating from 1898); the Tavistock Hotel is a few hundred feet to the south-west, on the south side of Tavistock Square; and the Royal National Hotel (possibly London's largest), which is on the same block as the Tavistock, is labelled.


CONTACT
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ELLINGTON 2008 can be reached at contact@ellington2008.org or by writing to:-

Ellington 2008 (Correspondence)
38 Thurlestone Avenue
London
N12 0LP
UK


LINKS
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The following are two sites relevant to Ellington in the UK and the past International Conferences:-

DESUK
The UK Duke Ellington Society.

Pictures from ELLINGTON 2004
A few photographs by Antony Pepper from the last Ellington International Conference, in Stockholm in 2004.


"All for the Love of Duke"