The song of the day for Friday, February 3, 2017 is “In A Mellow Tone.”
About This Song
“In A Mellow Tone” was written by Duke Ellington, with lyrics from Milt Gabler, was written in 1939. This song was based on the 1917 song “Rose Room” by Art Hickman and Harry Williams. The song is a favorite of both vocal and instrumental jazz performers, including Tony Bennett, Paul Gonsalves, Oscar Peterson, Coleman Hawkins, Ella Fitzgerald and Annie Ross.
About This Version
Tony Bennett recorded “In A Mellow Tone” in 1999 for his album Bennett Sings Ellington: Hot & Cool, which was released on the centennial birthday of the great Duke Ellington. This recording was arranged and conducted by Ralph Burns. It features the Ralph Sharon Quartet, with Sharon on piano, Paul Langosch on bass, Clayton Cameron on drums, and Gray Sargent on guitar. I especially like the opening of the song, which starts with just the singer and guitar, then piano and then the rest of the quartet. It’s a lovely beginning. Listen how the song grows throughout to finally bring in the band. Sargent’s guitar is outstanding on this recording.
“In A Mellow Tone,” as well as Bennett Sings Ellington: Hot & Cool, is available from iTunes.