The Duke Ellington Orchestra, featuring multi-platinum recording artist Brian McKnight, and Kenton's 100th - the Stan Centennial Orchestra with special guest Tierney Sutton perform tonight, August 8, at 8PM, to celebrate two classic and unique big band leaders who were known for using full orchestra and contributing beloved works to the American songbook.
The concert begins with a musical celebration of Stan Kenton’s career and musical achievements along with his 100th birthday. Both the conductor, Bob Curnow, and leader Peter Erskine are Kenton veterans. Tierney Sutton pays homage to famed vocalists June Christy and Jean Turner, for the evening; both garnered much success as singers with the Stan Kenton Orchestra. The evening concludes with the Duke Ellington Orchestra along with Brian McKnight as he sings the songs Ellington made classic.
Though classified as a jazz artist, Duke Ellington referred to his music as “American Music.” He composed over 3000 songs during his lifetime, and gave American music a distinctive sound for the first time, thereby leaving a legacy that renews itself through every generation of fans and music-lovers. Brian McKnight not only possesses an enviable falsetto, but is a multi-instrumentalist who plays nine different instruments ranging from brass to percussion to guitar. He began his career singing in the church choir and signed his first record deal at 19. In the time since, he has released 14 albums, been nominated for 16 Grammys, played the role of Billy Flynn in Chicago on Broadway, and in 2012 started his own record label with his sons, Trif3cta Records.
Stan Kenton led an illustrious career as a band leader, pioneer of jazz music education, and constant innovator. No stranger to controversy, he had an unwavering belief in his own work, and was a tireless salesman for it, giving it such descriptive titles as "artistry in rhythm," "progressive jazz" and "innovations in modern music." Kenton was the last major jazz-band leader to emerge from the Big Band era of 1935-45, and his was one of only a handful of bands that survived when that era came to an end. A four-time Grammy nominee for “Best Jazz Vocal Album,” Tierney Sutton is often described as “a singer’s singer,” but just as often, as a “musician’s singer,” who uses her voice like an instrument. Sutton will join Kenton's 100th - the Stan Centennial Orchestra to honor both the explorative and main-stream sides of Kenton’s legacy to commemorate his 100th birthday.
For more information, visit http://hbowl.com/BigBand.