Duke Ellington — He’s Our Royalty, and It’s His Birthday Today


Tired of the House of Windsor yet? Want to celebrate something truly royal? Then wish a happy birthday to real American royalty, Duke Ellington. Click for a video.

Edward Kennedy “Duke” Ellington was born on this day in 1899. Before he died in New York in 1974 and was interred at Woodlawn Cemetery, he brought us “It Don’t Mean a Thing,” swing at the Cotton Club, and the Harlem Renaissance.

Let the Windsors have their Diana dirge wedding ballad. We’ll just be grateful we live in a place where our Duke helps us “Take the ‘A’ Train.”


This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on April 29, 2011

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