The music on these two CD’s (51 tunes) has never been released before. The music is taken from 4 radio broadcasts in New York City in 1945 – part live and part in the radio studio. Aside from providing great big band jazz for the radio audience, the point of these broadcasts was also for Duke Ellington to sell war bonds in the final year of World War II. The repertoire consists mostly of well-known Ellington numbers, plus a few rarities. These radio broadcasts are particularly important because commercial studio recordings were banned during World War II. One tune on CD 2 – "I Miss Your Kiss", featuring the great trombone work of Lawrence Brown – was never recorded commercially. Other highpoints are Johnny Hodges’ smooth alto sax on "Mood to be Wooed", and Rex Stewart’s trumpet work on "Emancipation Celebration".
Duke Ellington (piano, arranger, leader), Rex Stewart, Taft Jordan, Shelton Hemphill, Cat Anderson (trumpets), Ray Nance (trumpet, violin, vocal), Joseph Nanton, Lawrence Brown, Claude Jones (trombones), Al Sears (tenor sax), Jimmy Hamilton (clarinet & Tenor sax), Johnny Hodges, Otto Hardwick (alto saxes), Harry Carney (baritone sax,clarinet,bass clarinet), Billy Strayhorn (piano, arranger), Fred Guy (guitar), Junior Raglin (bass), Sonny Greer (drums), Kay Davis, Albert Hibbler, Marie Ellington, Joya Sherrill, Ray Nance (vocals)CHAR(13) + CHAR(10)CHAR(13) + CHAR(10)