THE STRAYHORN ESTATE ON WNYU’S “THE PHOENIX”
With the centennial birth year of Billy Strayhorn approaching in 2015, the legendary composer’s estate is well into making its rounds to promote the artist’s musical and civil accomplishments. In fact, wiith outreach and events including a birthday celebration at Pittsburgh’s Kelley-Strayhorn Theater, a booth at the upcoming JEN conference, and several tribute performances and media pieces already in the works, it is accurate to say that his team is approaching the centennial with a running start.
In addition to working with Reservoir to maintain and expand the impact of Strayhorn’s catalog through performances, new recordings, and usages in visual media, one of the goals of the estate is to educate new generations of jazz fans, conveying the origins and impact of songs like “Take The ‘A’ Train”, “Lush Life”, and “Chelsea Bridge”, whose sound young listeners might recognize even as they remain unaware of Strayhorn himself.
To that end, Billy Strayhorn Songs, Inc. (BSSI) founder Alyce Claerbaut and Billy Strayhorn Foundaton President Leslie Demus–both nieces of Strayhorn–stopped by New York University’s WNYU jazz radio show The Phoenix last night to regale the liberal arts school’s audience with historical insight and personal anecdotes about their revered and accomplished uncle.
The full show featuring the Strayhorn estate’s captivating conversation with host Brandon Peckman is currently available for streaming at WNYU and on Soundcloud, below.
Additionally, listen for the below interpretations of Strayhorn compositions throughout the segment:
John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman – “Lush Life”
Oliver Nelson – “Passion Flower”
Duke Ellington and John Coltrane – “My Little Brown Book”
Joe Henderson – “Isfahan”
Billy Strayhorn – “Chelsea Bridge”
The Dave Brubeck Quartet – “Take The ‘A’ Train”
Billy Strayhorn – “Take The ‘A’ Train”
Reservoir, BSSI, and the Billy Strayhorn Foundation continue to partner to pursue new avenues for the Strayhorn catalog