Stuart de Silva is a jazz pianist from Sri Lanka.
He played in a group that broadcast on Sri Lankan radio backing among others, singer Yolande Bavan. Dave Brubeck later arranged for a scholarship for de Silva to study Jazz compositions at Berklee College in the States. He then went to London, where he played at the Flamingo jazz club, among other jazz venues.
Moving on to Paris, in March 1967, he was one of the pianists, the others being Joe "Stride" Turner, Errol Parker, Claude Bolling, Michel Sardaby, and Aaron Bridgers, accompanied on some tracks by bassist John Lamb, among others, who recorded the 90-minute session known as Tape for Billy, dedicated to Billy Strayhorn, who was in hospital. Duke Ellington, also in Paris, personally supervised the recording, although he didn't actually perform on it himself, and wanted to use the proceeds from its sale to create a Billy Strayhorn scholarship in Paris,similar to the one at Juilliard in New York.
From Paris he went on to Barcelona backing Ruth Brown as part of a trio with Ron Jefferson, who had just left the West Coast.
In 1970, Stuart starred as supporting character Ranji in the controversial film Tropic of Cancer (film) alongside Rip Torn & Academy Award winning actress Ellen Burstyn.
In 1986 he moved to Sydney, Australia where he finally retired from the music business.
On August 16, 2015, Stuart died in Sydney, Australia.
Edward Kennedy "Duke" Ellington was an American jazz pianist, composer, and leader of his eponymous jazz orchestra from 1923 through the rest of his life. Born and raised in Washington, D.C., Ellington was based in New York City from the mid-1920s and gained a national profile through his orchestra's appearances at the Cotton Club in Harlem. A master at writing miniatures for the three-minute 78 rpm recording format, Ellington wrote or collaborated on more than one thousand compositions; his extensive body of work is the largest recorded personal jazz legacy, and many of his pieces have become standards. He also recorded songs written by his bandsmen, such as Juan Tizol's "Caravan", which brought a Spanish tinge to big band jazz. At the end of the 1930s, Ellington began a nearly thirty-year collaboration with composer-arranger-pianist Billy Strayhorn, whom he called his writing and arranging companion. With Strayhorn, he composed multiple extended compositions, or suites, as well as many short pieces. For a few years at the beginning of Strayhorn's involvement, Ellington's orchestra featured bassist Jimmy Blanton and tenor saxophonist Ben Webster and reached a creative peak. Some years later following a low-profile period, an appearance by Ellington and his orchestra at the Newport Jazz Festival in July 1956 led to a major revival and regular world tours. Ellington recorded for most American record companies of his era, performed in and scored several films, and composed a handful of stage musicals.
William Thomas Strayhorn was an American jazz composer, pianist, lyricist, and arranger, who collaborated with bandleader and composer Duke Ellington for nearly three decades. His compositions include "Take the 'A' Train", "Chelsea Bridge", "A Flower Is a Lovesome Thing", and "Lush Life".
Luther Henderson was an American arranger, composer, orchestrator, and pianist best known for his contributions to Broadway musicals.
"Take the 'A' Train" is a jazz standard by Billy Strayhorn that was the signature tune of the Duke Ellington orchestra.
Newport 1958 is a 1958 album by Duke Ellington, recorded at the Newport Jazz Festival of that year and later in the Columbia recording studio. It was released two years after Ellington at Newport, the 1956 album that led to Ellington's career resurgence.
Such Sweet Thunder is a Duke Ellington album, released in 1957. The record is a twelve-part suite based on the work of William Shakespeare.
Although it is billed as a Duke Ellington and Johnny Hodges album, Side by Side is a 1959 album mostly under the leadership of Johnny Hodges, Duke Ellington's alto saxophonist for many years. Ellington only appears on three of this album's tracks. The album places Hodges at the fore, backing him with piano by Ellington or Billy Strayhorn and providing other accompaniment by jazz figures like Ben Webster, Roy Eldridge, Harry "Sweets" Edison and Jo Jones. The album, a follow-up to Back to Back: Duke Ellington and Johnny Hodges Play the Blues, has remained perpetually in print.
Sam Woodyard was an American jazz drummer.
Evidence is the fourth album by Steve Lacy and was released on the New Jazz label in 1962. It features performances of four tunes written by Thelonious Monk and two from Duke Ellington by Lacy, Don Cherry, Carl Brown and Billy Higgins.
"Something to Live For" is a 1939 jazz composition by Billy Strayhorn. It was the first collaboration between Strayhorn and Duke Ellington and became the first of many Strayhorn compositions to be recorded by Ellington's orchestra. The song was based on a poem Strayhorn had written as a teenager. According to an all-day tribute to Strayhorn on KCSM radio on 29 November 2008—Strayhorn's birthday—Strayhorn began working on this tune in 1933 when he was 18.
Oscar Peterson Plays Duke Ellington is an album by Canadian jazz pianist Oscar Peterson, of songs associated with Duke Ellington released in 1952 on Clef Records. Peterson re-recorded much of the music for his 1959 album Oscar Peterson Plays the Duke Ellington Song book.
The Ellington Suites is an album by the American pianist, composer, and bandleader Duke Ellington. It collects three suites recorded in 1959, 1971, and 1972, and was released on the Pablo label in 1976. The album won a Grammy Award for Best Jazz Performance by a Big Band in 1976. Ellington and Billy Strayhorn wrote "The Queen's Suite" for Queen Elizabeth II who was presented with a single pressing of the recording, which was not commercially issued during Ellington's lifetime.
Ellington Uptown is an album by American pianist, composer and bandleader Duke Ellington recorded for the Columbia label in 1951 & 1952. The album was re-released on CD in 2004 with additional tracks recorded in 1947 and originally released as the Liberian Suite EP.
Great Times! is an album by American pianist, composer and bandleader Duke Ellington's featuring duet performances with his arranger and musical partner Billy Strayhorn originally recorded for the Mercer Records label in 1950, and later released on a 10" LP called Piano Duets. The sessions were re-released on Riverside as Great Times! in 1984 with tracks from an additional session with Oscar Pettiford.
Duke Ellington at the Alhambra is a live album by American pianist, composer and bandleader Duke Ellington recorded in 1958 at the Alhambra Theater, Paris and released on the Pablo label in 2002.
Featuring Paul Gonsalves is an album by American jazz pianist, composer, and bandleader Duke Ellington. Without new material to work with, Ellington recorded the album with his orchestra and saxophonist Paul Gonsalves in 1962 during a four-hour recording session. It was not released until 1985 by Fantasy Records.
Michel Sardaby is a French jazz pianist.
Homage to Duke is an album by American pianist Dave Grusin released in 1993, recorded for GRP Records, and is Grusin's interpretation of Duke Ellington's music.
The Peaceful Side is an album by pianist and composer Billy Strayhorn recorded in Paris in 1961 and originally released on United Artists Jazz in 1963, then reissued by Solid State in 1968 as The Peaceful Side of Billy Strayhorn.
The Tommy Flanagan Tokyo Recital is an album by jazz pianist Tommy Flanagan. It is a trio album, recorded in 1975, with bassist Keter Betts and drummer Bobby Durham.