This was Duke Ellington's first film score, undertaken at the urging of Anatomy of a Murder's director, Otto Preminger. The full range of the composer's previous work was brought to bear on this 1959 work. Ellington was a natural choice to convey the rich and varied emotional moods of this drama. Tension and release, danger and safety, movement and stillness, darkness and light; the textural palette that was Ellington's signature was always compellingly cinematic.
In these orchestral settings, Duke's soloists (Cat Anderson, Clark Terry, Johnny Hodges, Harry Carney, and others) shine, as their playing reflects true variations on a theme in a classical sense. That's not to say that this set doesn't swing, too – "Happy Anatomy" is a short but fully cranked gallop. This is an album of rich variety and evocative writing.
Aretha Franklin has simply been one of the greatest singers of the modern generation, and whether bringing her powerful, passionate voice to bear on gospel standards, songs from the Great American Songbook, jazz standards, pop ditties, or deep Southern soul and R&B, she has always had the presence – much like Ray Charles – to make anything she touches unmistakably hers. Franklin began her career in gospel when she was still a teenager, and her amazing vocal talents, coupled with her fine piano playing, marked her as a once-in-a-lifetime kind of artist, qualities very apparent to legendary talent scout John Hammond, who signed her to Columbia Records.
BBC Radio 2 Live in Hyde Park, A Festival in a day, September 11, 2016. Status Quo have been rockin' for six decades, notching up 65 hit singles, selling over 100m records worldwide and spending more than 400 weeks in the British singles chart. It's no wonder Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt from the band were awarded OBEs in 2010 for their services to music. These days they've transformed their heads down rock, playing many of their legendary songs - from Pictures of Matchstick Men and Down Down, to Whatever You Want and Rockin' All Over the World - in a stripped-down acoustic style. Get ready for yet another outstanding performance at Radio 2 Live in Hyde Park.
BBC Radio 2 Live in Hyde Park, A Festival in a day, September 11, 2016. The legendary musician performs a hit-packed set in Hyde Park, also featuring tracks from his well received 32nd studio album, Wonderful Crazy Night.