Duke Ellington Plates
1941, Manhattan bustles, and New York City's newest subway line - the "A" train - is moving people in more ways than one. A new instrumental "Take the 'A' Train," rolls up the charts and will become the signature song of pianist Edward Kennedy Ellington. The song will bring financial success to a pioneering music publishing venture, owned by Duke Ellington.
But was the young composer of "Take the A Train" himself denied full credit for the hit song? More than half a century later, Garfield Gillings, of Brooklyn, New York, has made a discovery, boxes of sheet music in a dumpster. Among the paper scores are metal sheets that look like printing plates for "Take the A Train."
History Detectives sets out to find the story behind these plates and to determine the role they played in this jazz classic.
- Also with Tukufu Zuberi Transistor Radio Is this the oldest transistor radio in existence?
- Also in Depression and WWII: 1929-1945 Tumbling Tumbleweeds Why would writing this song be bad for Bob Nolan?
- Also in Depression and WWII: 1929-1945 Iwo Jima Map What role did this map play in one of World War II's fiercest battles?
- Related Investigation Motown Amp Did this amp boom the bass line of the Motown sound?
- Also in Season 7 Navajo Rug Why would a weaver depart from tradition to make this rug?
- Also in Depression and WWII: 1929-1945 WWII Diary Does this diary hold the key to understanding the fate of a missing bomber pilot from World War II?
This is a place for opinions, comments, questions and discussion; a place where viewers of History Detectives can express their points of view and connect with others who value history. We ask that posters be polite and respectful of all opinions. History Detectives reserves the right to delete comments that don’t conform to this conduct. We will not respond to every post, but will do our best to answer specific questions, or address an error.