Ellington Timeline Ellington
Timeline

Year Age Events Musical Highlights
1899
  • 29apr Edward Kennedy Ellington born in Washington, D.C.

  • 1900 1
  • 22jan Juan Tizol born

  • 1901 2
  • 4aug Louis Armstrong born

  • 1902 3

    1903 4
  • 3apr Bubber Miley born

  • 1904 5
  • 1feb Joe Nanton born

  • 1905 6
  • 10jul Ivie Anderson born

  • 1906 7
  • 3mar Barney Bigard born
  • 25jul Johnny Hodges born

  • 1907 8
  • Ellington takes piano lessons from Mrs Clinkscales
  • 22feb Rex Stewart born
  • 3aug Lawrence Brown born

  • 1908 9
  • Ellington has job selling peanuts at Washington Senators baseball games
  • 11aug Russell Procope born

  • 1909 10
  • 27mar Ben Webster born

  • 1910 11
  • 21feb Al Sears born
  • 1apr Harry Carney born

  • 1911 12
  • Ellington sneaks into the Gayety Theater to see burlesque shows
  • 10jul Cootie Williams born

  • 1912 13
  • Ellington frequents Frank Holliday's poolroom, right next to the Howard Theatre

  • 1913 14
  • Ellington begins high school (majoring in art), where he earns the nickname Duke
  • Begins playing piano at the Poodle Dog Cafe and high school dances
  • 10dec Ray Nance born
  • Poodle Dog Rag
  • Soda Fountain Rag
  • 1914 15
  • What You Gonna Do When The Bed Breaks Down?
  • 1915 16
  • 16aug Al Hibbler born
  • 29nov Billy Strayhorn born

  • 1916 17

    1917 18
  • Ellington leaves school to pursue music full time
  • 25may Jimmy Hamilton born

  • 1918 19
  • Ellington's first group, The Duke's Serenaders
  • Married Edna Thompson
  • 25apr Ella Fitzgerald born
  • oct Jimmie Blanton born

  • 1919 20
  • Ellington's ad appears in the D.C. telephone directory
  • 11mar Mercer Ellington born

  • 1920 21
  • 12jul Paul Gonsalves born
  • 14dec Clark Terry born

  • 1921 22
  • Ellington plays for James P. Johnson

  • 1922 23
  • 30sep Oscar Pettiford born

  • 1923 24
  • Ellington moves to New York, plays at the Exclusive Club and then the Hollywood Club
  • Bubber Miley added

  • 1924 25

    1925 26
  • Hollywood Club changes name to Kentucky Club
  • 7jan Sam Woodyard born
  • 27mar Harold Ashby born
  • 12nov Louis Armstrong records the first of the Hot Fives
  • 1926 27
  • Joe Nanton added
  • 29nov East St Louis Toodle-oo
  • 1927 28
  • Cotton Club engagement begins in December & features national radio broadcasts every week
  • Harry Carney & Wellman Braud added
  • 20aug Joya Sherrill born
  • 7apr Black And Tan Fantasy [Brunswick]
  • 26oct Black And Tan Fantasy [Victor]
  • 26oct Creole Love Call [Adelaide Hall, vocal]
  • 1928 29
  • Cotton Club engagement continues
  • Barney Bigard & Johnny Hodges added
  • 26mar Jubilee Stomp
  • 26mar Black Beauty [Victor]
  • 1oct Black Beauty [Ellington piano solo] [Okeh]
  • 1oct The Mooche [Baby Cox, vocal] [Okeh]
  • 30oct The Mooche [Victor]
  • 1929 30
  • Cotton Club engagement continues
  • Juan Tizol added
  • 16jan Flaming Youth
  • 16jan Saturday Night Function
  • 1mar Paducah
  • 7mar The Dicty Glide
  • 14nov Breakfast Dance
  • 14nov Jazz Lips
  • 20nov Lazy Duke
  • 1930 31
  • Cotton Club engagement continues
  • Mood Indigo propels Ellington to international fame
  • Check And Double Check [film]
  • 20aug Ring Dem Bells [Cootie Williams, vocal]
  • 20aug Old Man Blues
  • 17oct Mood Indigo [Dreamy Blues]
  • 1931 32
  • Cotton Club engagement ends in January
  • Ivie Anderson added
  • 8jan Rockin' In Rhythm
  • 11jun Creole Rhapsody Parts 1-2
  • 16jun Echoes Of The Jungle
  • 1932 33
  • Lawrence Brown added
  • 2feb It Don't Mean A Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing) [Ivie Anderson, vocal]
  • 11feb St Louis Blues [Bing Crosby, vocal]
  • 22dec Diga Diga Doo [The Mills Brothers, vocal]
  • 1933 34
  • First European Tour
  • 16may Sophisticated Lady
  • 4dec Dear Old Southland [Louis Bacon, vocal]
  • 4dec Daybreak Express
  • 1934 35
  • Symphony In Black [film]
  • 9jan Delta Serenade
  • 10jan Solitude
  • dec Symphony In Black [Billie Holiday, vocal] [film]
  • 1935 36
  • 27may Ellington's mother dies
  • 30apr In A Sentimental Mood
  • 12sep Reminiscing In Tempo Parts 1-4
  • 1936 37
  • Small group sessions begin
  • 27feb Echoes Of Harlem (Cootie's Concerto)
  • 27feb Clarinet Lament (Barney's Concerto)
  • 16dec Lazy Man's Shuffle (RS)
  • 19dec Clouds In My Heart (BB)
  • 19dec Caravan (BB)
  • 19dec Stompy Jones (BB)
  • 1937 38
  • 8mar Downtown Uproar (CW)
  • 8mar Diga Diga Doo (CW)
  • 8mar Blue Reverie (CW)
  • 14may Caravan
  • 14may Azure
  • 7jul The Back Room Romp (A Contrapuntal Stomp) (RS)
  • 1938 39
  • Billy Strayhorn added
  • 13jan Prologue To Black And Tan Fantasy
  • 13jan The New Black And Tan Fantasy
  • 28mar Jeep's Blues (JH)
  • 22jun Pyramid (JH)
  • 1aug Jitterbug's Lullaby (JH)
  • 9aug Prelude To A Kiss
  • 19dec Battle Of Swing
  • 22dec Blue Light (Transbluency)
  • 1939 40
  • Jimmie Blanton added
  • 20mar Subtle Lament
  • 6jun Serenade To Sweden
  • 28aug The Sergeant Was Shy
  • 16oct Killin' Myself [Ivie Anderson & Billy Strayhorn, vocal]
  • 1940 41
  • Ben Webster added
  • Exclusive contract with Victor
  • Ellington-Blanton duets
  • Ellington recorded live at Fargo, N.D.
  • Cootie Williams leaves
  • 15feb Dry Long So [Cootie Williams, vocal]
  • 6mar Jack The Bear
  • 6mar Ko-Ko
  • 15mar Concerto For Cootie
  • 4may Cotton Tail
  • 28may Dusk
  • 22jul Harlem Air Shaft
  • 22jul All Too Soon
  • 5sep In A Mellotone
  • 1oct Pitter Panther Patter [Duke Ellington, piano; Jimmie Blanton, bass]
  • 17oct Warm Valley
  • 28oct Across The Track Blues
  • 2nov Day Dream (JH)
  • 2nov Mobile Bay (RS)
  • 2nov Linger Awhile (RS)
  • 7nov Sepia Panorama [live in Fargo, North Dakota]
  • 7nov Stardust [live in Fargo, North Dakota]
  • 28dec Flamingo [Herb Jeffries, vocal]
  • 1941 42
  • Small group sessions end
  • Jump For Joy [musical]
  • 15feb Take The "A" Train
  • 15feb Jumpin' Punkins
  • 15feb Blue Serge
  • 26jun I Got It Bad And That Ain't Good [Ivie Anderson, vocal]
  • 2jul Jump For Joy [Herb Jeffries, vocal]
  • 2jul Jump For Joy [Ivie Anderson, vocal]
  • 3jul Passion Flower (JH)
  • 3jul Squaty Roo (JH)
  • 3jul Things Ain't What They Used To Be (JH)
  • 3jul Subtle Slough (RS)
  • 3jul Menelik The Lion Of Judah (RS)
  • 2dec Chelsea Bridge
  • 1942 43
  • Recording ban begins in August
  • 21jan The C-Jam Blues
  • 21jan Moon Mist
  • 26jun Main Stem
  • 1943 44
  • Recording ban continues
  • First Carnegie Hall Concert
  • 23jan Black, Brown & Beige [live at Carnegie Hall]
  • 1944 45
  • Recording ban ends in November
  • 1dec I'm Beginning To See The Light [Joya Sherrill, vocal]
  • 1945 46
  • The Duke Ellington Treasury Series begins
  • 4jan Carnegie Blues
  • 24jul The Perfume Suite [Al Hibbler, vocal]
  • 1946 47
  • Ellington switches to Musicraft
  • 4jan A Tonal Group [live at Carnegie Hall]
  • 9jul Transbluency (A Blue Fog You Can Almost See Through) [Kay Davis, vocal]
  • 17jul The Mooche
  • 23oct Magenta Haze
  • 25nov Happy-Go-Lucky Local Parts 1-2
  • 1947 48
  • Ellington switches to Columbia
  • Ellington's first LP The Liberian Suite recorded
  • 10nov Air Conditioned Jungle
  • 18nov Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me [Al Hibbler, vocal]
  • 20nov Don't Get Around Much Anymore [Al Hibbler, vocal]
  • 22dec On A Turquoise Cloud [Dolores Parker, vocal]
  • 30dec The Clothed Woman
  • The Liberian Suite (Columbia) 10" LP
  • 1948 49
  • Second recording ban wipes out entire year
  • Concerts at Carnegie Hall & Cornell University

  • 1949 50
  • Second recording ban ends in August
  • 1sep Creole Love Call [Kay Davis, vocal]
  • 1sep Snibor
  • 1950 51
  • Paul Gonsalves added
  • Masterpieces By Ellington (Columbia)
  • 1951 52
  • Johnny Hodges & Sonny Greer leave!
  • Willie Smith & Louis Bellson added
  • 10may Monologue (Pretty And The Wolf)
  • Ellington Uptown (Columbia)
  • 1952 53
  • Ellington Uptown In Hi Fi (Columbia)
  • Seattle Concert (RCA)
  • 1953 54
  • Ellington switches to Capitol
  • Premiered By Ellington (Capitol)
  • The Duke Plays Ellington (Capitol) 10" LP
  • The Duke Plays Ellington (Capitol) 12" LP
  • 1954 55
  • 17jan Rockin' In Rhythm
  • 17jan Happy-Go-Lucky Local
  • 26apr Bunny Hop Mambo (??)
  • 1955 56
  • Johnny Hodges returns!
  • The Duke Ellington Society founded in Washington, D.C.
  • Ellington '55 (Capitol)
  • Dance To The Duke (Capitol)
  • Ellington Showcase (Capitol)
  • 1956 57
  • 7jul Newport appearance revives Ellington's career
  • 20aug Ellington on cover of Time magazine
  • Ellington returns to Columbia
  • Blue Rose (Columbia)
  • Historically Speaking The Duke (Bethlehem)
  • Duke Ellington Presents (Bethlehem)
  • Ellington At Newport (Columbia)
  • Duke Ellington And Buck Clayton At Newport (Columbia)
  • Ellington At Tanglewood Volumes 1-2 (Queen)
  • A Drum Is A Woman (Columbia)
  • 1957 58
  • Such Sweet Thunder (Columbia)
  • Ella Fitzgerald Sings The Duke Ellington Song Book (Verve)
  • Ellington Indigos (Columbia)
  • 1958 59
  • Black, Brown & Beige Featuring Mahalia Jackson (Columbia)
  • At The Bal Masque (Columbia)
  • The Cosmic Scene (Columbia)
  • Newport 1958 (Columbia)
  • Billy Strayhorn Live (Roulette)
  • 1959 60
  • Anatomy Of A Murder [film]
  • Ellington Jazz Party (Columbia)
  • Back To Back (Verve)
  • Side By Side (Verve)
  • "The Queen's Suite" on The Ellington Suites (Pablo)
  • Anatomy Of A Murder (Columbia)
  • Newport Jazz Festival 1959 (Foxy)
  • Festival Session (Columbia)
  • Blues In Orbit (Columbia)
  • 1960 61
  • Paris Blues [film]
  • The Nutcracker Suite (Columbia)
  • Piano In The Background (Columbia)
  • Peer Gynt Suite (Columbia)
  • The Unknown Session (Columbia)
  • 1961 62
  • Piano In The Foreground (Columbia)
  • Louis Armstrong And Duke Ellington - The Beautiful Americans (Roulette)
  • Paris Blues (United Artists)
  • Battle Royale - Duke Ellington & Count Basie (Columbia)
  • 1962 63
  • Cootie Williams returns
  • All American In Jazz (Columbia)
  • A Midnight In Paris (Columbia)
  • Duke Ellington Meets Coleman Hawkins (Impulse)
  • Money Jungle with Charlie Mingus & Max Roach (United Artists)
  • Duke Ellington & John Coltrane (Impulse)
  • 1963 64
  • Will The Big Bands Ever Come Back? (Reprise)
  • Recollections Of The Big Band Era (Reprise)
  • Afro-Bossa (Reprise)
  • The Great Paris Concert (Atlantic)
  • Greatest Hits (Reprise)
  • Duke Ellington's Jazz Violin Session (Atlantic)
  • Serenade To Sweden with Alice Babs (Reprise)
  • My People (Contact)
  • 1964 65
  • Mary Poppins (Reprise)
  • 1965 66
  • Ellington '65 (Reprise)
  • Concert In The Virgin Islands (Reprise)
  • The Duke At Tanglewood with The Boston Pops (Victor)
  • Ella At Duke's Place (Verve)
  • Concert Of Sacred Music (Victor)
  • 1966 67
  • Ellington '66 (Reprise)
  • The Popular Duke Ellington (Victor)
  • Duke Ellington At The Cote D'Azur (Verve)
  • Soul Call (Verve)
  • The Far East Suite (Victor)
  • 1967 68
  • 31may Billy Strayhorn dies
  • "...And His Mother Called Him Bill (Victor)
  • Duke Ellington - Frank Sinatra (Reprise)
  • 1968 69
  • Yale Concert (Fantasy)
  • Second Sacred Concert (United Artists)
  • 1969 70
  • 29apr Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • 70th Birthday Concert (United Artists)
  • 1970 71
  • The Pianist (Fantasy)
  • Latin American Suite (Fantasy)
  • New Orleans Suite (Atlantic)
  • Orchestral Works with The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra (Decca)
  • 1971 72
  • The Intimate Ellington (Pablo)
  • The Afro-Eurasian Eclipse (Fantasy)
  • The English Concert/Togo Brava Suite (United Artists)
  • 1972 73
  • Up In Duke's Workshop (Pablo)
  • This One's For Blanton (Pablo)
  • 1973 74
  • Duke's Big Four (Pablo)
  • Duke Ellington & Teresa Brewer (Columbia)
  • Third Sacred Concert (RCA Victor)
  • Eastbourne Performance (RCA Victor)
  • 1974 75
  • 25may Edward Kennedy Ellington dies in New York

  • Take The 'A' Train