Duke Ellington

A Founding Father Of Jazz By: Cameron Darlak and Ian Knott

Early Life

  • Grew up in a middle class family
  • Dropped out of school at age 17 to start music career
  • Born on April 29 1899 known as Edward Kennedy Ellington
  • Went to public school
  • Self-taught at composing at age 15
  • Began studying piano at age 6
  • Born in Washington D.C.
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  • His parents loved all music
  • Discrimination caused him to write a song called "Black, Brown, and Beige" for African American people
  • Piano style Ragtime

Time Period

  • Lived 75 years
  • The Great Depression, World War 2, The Prohibition on Alcohol
  • Duke Ellington died of lung cancer on May 24, 1974

Their Music

  • Jazz
  • Orchestra
  • Take The "A" Train (1939)
  • Wrote "The River" Ballet
  • Wrote scores for "Anatomy of a Murder" (1959) and "The Far East Suite" (1965)

Interesting Facts

  • Taught himself to play music
  • Ellington's orchestra faced racial prejudice
  • He wrote music for movies and Broadway shows
  • Duke was a jazz composer, orchestra leader, and a pianist
  • Moved to Harlem, New York