Joya Sherrill

Joya Sherrill Sings Duke

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One of the best singers who toured with Duke Ellington, she seemed to be a natural choice for a feature album, only this release was produced by Mercer Ellington with a number of Ellington veterans in the supporting cast and Billy Strayhorn at the piano. Sherrill's confidence singing the twelve gems from the band repertoire allows her to let the timelessness of the music and lyrics speak for itself rather than overembelish the songs. Her superb diction and warm sound are complemented by brief accents by alto saxophonist Johnny Hodges on "Prelude To A Kiss," the muted cornet of Ray Nance on a sassy "I'm Beginning To See The Night," and Nance's violin on her moving take of "Day Dream." This rare outing away from the full band, now available on CD, is worth acquiring.

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