Those of us who are that way inclined can probably agree that Billy Strayhorn was a genius. He became Duke Ellington’s main muse at the age of 23 and collaborated with him for the rest of his life until his early death at the age of 52.
My favourite Strayhorn song, and in my top ten favourite songs altogether, is Lush Life. Top instrumental version is Coltrane’s, top vocal, Ella Fitzgerald or Blossom Dearie, can’t decide. Strayhorn wrote the song, music and lyrics, between 1933 and 1936. That’s 18 to 21…those chords! Those lyrics!
Now this has surfaced – the very first recording, Carnegie Hall on November 13, 1948. Strayhorn on piano, Kay Davis on vox. Another magnificent version to add to the collection. Do give it a listen. H/t to Richard Williams, who retweeted the tweet.