On Wednesday 10 November, he will be offering a multi-media presentation entitled “Duke Ellington in his Own Words” at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA). The event is hosted by jazz guitar legend Kenny Burrell, director of Jazz Studies and Professor of Ethnomusicology at UCLA. The talk will feature several rare audio clips of Ellington interviews and performances that Cohen gathered while researching his new book Duke Ellington’s America (now in its second printing from the University of Chicago Press). Admission is free; the event will be held in 1439 Schoenberg Hall on the UCLA campus.
On Monday, 29 November 2010 at 6PM, at the Royal Academy of Music’s (RAM) concert room, Cohen will be interviewing BBC Radio 3 host, Times jazz critic, RAM jazz history lecturer Alyn Shipton about Hi De Ho: The Life of Cab Calloway, his new Oxford University Press biography of jazz vocalist and jive linguist Calloway (pictured in this post). Calloway, one of the most famous personalities in popular music during the Swing Era, shared a controversial manager and music publisher with Duke Ellington during the 1930s, a topic guaranteed to be brought up during this event. Admission is free and copies of Shipton’s and Cohen’s new books will be available.
Just a reminder: this Wednesday 27 October at 7PM, Cohen’s book launch for Duke Ellington’s America will be held at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama’s Music Hall as part of the London Centre for Arts and Cultural Exchange’s Inside Out arts festival. It will feature live Ellington music from the Guildhall Jazz Orchestra, interspersed with an interview of Cohen by Guildhall Jazz Orchestra leader and conductor Martin Hathaway, and a full concert of Ellington music after the interview. The event is also sponsored by the Arts & Humanities Research Council. For more information, consult this site.
Also, Cohen will be appearing at the London Jazz Festival this year on Saturday 20 November at 6PM in the Front Room of the Southbank Centre, speaking about his book, especially concentrating on Ellington’s close friend and writing partner Billy Strayhorn, the subject of a concert that night. More information for this free event is here.
The official site for Cohen’s book Duke Ellington’s America, including overview, chapter-by-chapter summary, excerpts, reviews and YouTube clips is here.