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Duke Ellington

Duke Ellington
by Karen Barbera


Publication date was January 26, 2022–the day the Ellington-Horton Black, Brown and Beige premiered at Steinmetz Hall.

Karen Barbera and Randall Keith Horton were strangers who met on a train. A cordial conversation led to an eight-year collaboration to tell new and enlightening stories about Duke Ellington and to bring his forgotten masterpieces back to life. The results are concerts and this book—a biography of both Ellington and Horton centered on their unique relationship and the musical and cultural importance of Black, Brown and Beige and Sacred Concerts.

Duke Ellington: The Notes the World Was Not Ready to Hear illuminates the historical significance of the compositions that helped create a paradigm shift in American music, race relations and culture. It is an engrossing story of “mysterious callings” that led Ellington to choose Randall Keith Horton as his assistant composer, conductor and pianist in 1973, and the author’s serendipitous connection to Horton.

Artist Gale Fulton Ross created the watercolor at the heart of the cover design. She currently works from a studio in California where she is creating an exhibition in homage to Black artists and thinkers of the 60s.

C.S. Fritz is an award-winning author and illustrator with published titles such as The Cottonmouth Trilogy, Good Night Tales, The Moonman Cometh, Moth, Seekers, and many more. He designs covers and creates illustrations for Armin Lear Press.

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