The Big Band sound
describes a musical orchestration
associated with jazz and swing.
It included an ensemble of about 12
to upwards of 25 musicians playing
woodwind, percussion and
brass (hence the big band sound) instruments.
Big Band sound started in the U. S. during the
depression era of the 1930s.
It quickly spread across the nation as people
snapped their fingers
tapped their feet
shook their hips
and danced to the intoxicating music.
Considered among the greats of the Big Band leaders
was celebrated jazz pianist Duke Ellington.
(image from amazon.com):
‘Sir’ Duke at the piano
Duke Ellington, 1899 – 1974
‘Take the A Train
is one of the most recognizable piece of
instrumental jazz music.
The score was composed in 1939
by Billy Strayhorn
and is the signature tune of the
Duke Ellington Band.
The title of the tone was inspired by the then newly constructed
A Train subway line in New York City.
The line linked the two largest Black neighborhoods in New York City,
Harlem (Manhattan) and Bedford-Stuyvesant (Brooklyn):
a transport feat as well as one of sociological significance.
Today, the A Eighth Avenue Express
operates at all times and connects
parts of the major NYC boroughs:
Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan and the Bronx.
When next in NYC, why not
take a ‘ride on the A train’?
For now- sit back, relax, watch and listen to the sounds of
The Duke Ellington Band playing ‘Take the A train’.