A historic record recorded just four years removed from the dawn of the analog tape era!
200-gram double LP set remastered by Ryan K. Smith at Sterling Sound from the original analog tapes and cut at 45 RPM!
Recorded on an Ampex 200, using 3M-111 magnetic tape running at 15 inches per second
Gatefold old-style "tip-on" on jacket by Stoughton Printing
Plated and pressed at Quality Record Pressings!
Masterpieces By Ellington shines from an astonishingly brief period of history that gave the recording industry two of its greatest achievements — the introduction of magnetic tape recording and the 33 1/3 LP, or long-playing record. Now with our 45 RPM release, the best-sounding version of this historic album gives listeners an even richer sonic experience. The dead-quiet double-LP, with the music spread over four sides of vinyl, reduces distortion and high frequency loss as the wider-spaced grooves let your stereo cartridge track more accurately.
The four selections contained here catapulted the Maestro Ellington into the LP era, as the great composer/arranger/pianist and his matchless orchestra took full advantage of the possibilities afforded by magnetic tape recording and the still-new 33 1/3 RPM LP to, for the first time, capture uncut concert arrangements of their signature songs.
Duke was joined for this album by a virtuoso supporting cast: Duke Ellington, Billy Strayhorn (piano). Russell Procope, Paul Gonzalves, Johnnie Hodges, Jimmy Hamilton (saxophone). Nelson Williams, Andrew Ford, Harold Baker, Ray Nance, William Anderson (trumpet). Quentin Jackson, Lawrence Brown, Tyree Glenn (trombone). Mercer Ellington (horn). Sonny Greer (drums). Wendell Marshall (bass). Yvonne Lanauze (vocals).
This album wouldn't have been possible without a chain of events starting at the end of World War II. Recorded in December 1950, just five years after Germany fell to the Allies, revealing the Germans' advances in magnetic tape recording, Ellington's master work holds its wonder still today and the recording quality hands-down betters the sound of many modern-day albums.
Masterpieces is a revelation and a throwback to a golden recording age. So much history and so much luck combined make this album truly special.
1. Mood Indigo
2. Sophisticated Lady
3. The Tattooed Bride