Duke Ellington – One of the Most Profound Jazz Artist of Black History

Jazz Hands

Jazz music came to be made in the early 1920s. It is composed of syncopation, improvisation and rhythmic propulsiveness. It is predominantly based on the musical inclination of instruments rather than vocal synchronization amongst one or more instruments. The concept of call and response is incorporated into the jazz sets through the use of “swing”, “bent” or “blue” notes. Vocalization is also used jazz in accompaniment of the instrumentals. This variation of music is very similar to Ragtime, Secular Folk music and Negro Spiritual as these genres all depict musical expression to some extent. In this time period, jazz allowed dancing to become more widespread and popular than usual. The jitterbug, Charleston and a plethora of other dances were made in response to jazz to make the music more memorable as well as enjoyable for all especially Africa Americans. 

The Man with a Plan: Duke Ellington

Duke Ellington, otherwise known as Edward Kennedy Ellington, a renowned jazz composer, composer and pianist who was known for his creation of Big Band Jazz as well as his prominent role as a band member that played at the Cotton Club. He began first playing ragtime music before transitioning into jazz or what he liked to call it “American Music“. His band consisted of a sextet which later transformed into a 10-piece ensemble. They made dozens of recordings, they had the ability to tour, etc. He won a total of 12 Grammy’s and “Sophisticated Lady” is one of Ellington’s well-known and popular songs. It was known for its melodic tone and involvement of the trumpet. He made it very well known that African Americans had the same amount of talent and intelligence that White Americans had in relation to music especially ‘classical music’ and jazz. Throughout Ellington’s lifetime, he continuously proved that his artistic abilities and talents manifested the lives of others around the world. His impact on the musical world still remains and here is an audio of one of his most famous selections ‘Sophisticated Lady’.


In conclusion, Duke Ellington still remains one of the most profound Jazz musicians in history and his music still persists to influence future artists to come. 

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