Duke Ellington and Johnny Hodges - Back to Back (2LP, 45RPM, 200g)
Duke Ellington and Johnny Hodges - Back to Back (2LP, 45RPM, 200g)
Duke Ellington and Johnny Hodges - Back to Back (2LP, 45RPM, 200g)
Duke Ellington and Johnny Hodges - Back to Back (2LP, 45RPM, 200g)

Duke Ellington and Johnny Hodges - Back to Back (2LP, 45RPM, 200g)

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Duke Ellington – piano [click here to see more vinyl featuring Duke Ellington]

Johnny Hodges – alto saxophone [click here to see more vinyl featuring Johnny Hodges]

Harry "Sweets" Edison – trumpet [click here to see more vinyl featuring Harry Sweets Edison]

Les Spann – guitar

Al Hall – bass (A1, C1)

Sam Jones – bass (A2-D2)

Jo Jones – drums


2 LPs, standard sleeve

Limited Edition

Original analog Master tape : YES

Heavy Press : 200g

Record color : black

Speed : 45RPM

Size : 12''



Record Press :  Quality Record Pressings

Label :  Analogue Productions 

Original Label :  Verve records

Recorded February 20, 1959 at Columbia Studios, New York

Remastered by George Marino at Sterling Sound

Originally released in 1959

Reissued in 2012


Tracks :

Side A:

  1. Wabash Blues
  2. Basin Street Blues

Side B:

  1. Beale Street Blues

Side C:

  1. Weary Blues
  2. St. Louis Blues

Side D:

  1. Loveless Love
  2. Royal Garden Blues


Reviews :

"... successful enough to spawn a successor album Side by Side. Both albums have long been collectables with jazz lovers as well as audiophiles, as they contribute top-notch music with fabulous sound. ... the new mastering by the late George Marino of Sterling Sound brings out more detail and texture to the instrumental sound than the original. Sterling Sound's reissues of the 1960s material from the MGM period have been dramatically better than the reissues. The improvement here is real but not as dramatic. Still, this is a first-class reissue." Dennis D. Davis, Hi-Fi +, Issue 96

These distinctive small-group sessions, featuring Duke Ellington as pianist in a blues context, are part of a group of recordings issued under the confusing titles Back to Back and Side by Side, and further reissued under the not particularly distinctive name of Blues Summit. But there should be no confusion about the high quality of music that came out of these sessions -- it is all "cooking with gas" as the expression goes. From the jazz world, it would be difficult to find more profound soloists on traditional blues numbers than the Duke or his longtime collaborator Johnny Hodges, who does some of the most soulful playing of his career here. Also hitting a very high standard for himself is trumpeter Harry Edison and, while musicians are being patted on the back, the Jones boys in the rhythm section should be given a hand. That's Jo Jones (drums) and Sam Jones (bass), so as not to create additional confusion in the Jones-heavy jazz world. The songs all have titles that end in "Blues," with the oddball having "Love" in the title not once but twice. (It's "Loveless Love," what else?) But these songs are just vehicles for playing the blues, a formula that has produced great music many times, and certainly did every time this particular pianist was leading the group." AllMusic Review by Eugene Chadbourne



AllMusic 3.5/5  ,  Discogs 4.49 / 5  ,   HiFi+ :  Recording = 9.5/10; Music = 9/10

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