Black, Brown and Beige  

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"By 1937 or 1938, the Duke was attempting long compositions like the four-part "Reminiscing in Tempo" that lasts twelve minutes. This composition, and others like "Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue" and the recent "Black, Brown and Beige", have an impressive sound but contain literally nothing to grapple with in the way of coherent logical content. From an emotional point of view they are vague, diffused, and nostalgic. The beautiful phrases and the shining sounds are only those of an evanescent sensuousness."--Shining Trumpets, a History of Jazz (1946) by Rudi Blesh, p. 281

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Black, Brown and Beige is an extended jazz work written by Duke Ellington for his first concert at Carnegie Hall, on January 23, 1943. Ellington introduced it at Carnegie Hall as "a parallel to the history of the Negro in America." It was Ellington's longest and most ambitious composition.





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