...And His Mother Called Him Bill

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...And His Mother Called Him Bill
Duke Ellington - ...And His Mother Called Him Bill album cover.jpg
Studio album by
RecordedAugust 28, 1967–November 15, 1967
StudioCoast Recorders, San Francisco; RCA Studio A, New York City
ProducerSteve Backer, Brad McCuen
Duke Ellington chronology
North of the Border in Canada
...And His Mother Called Him Bill
Francis A. & Edward K.

...And His Mother Called Him Bill is a studio album by Duke Ellington recorded in the wake of the 1967 death of his long-time collaborator, Billy Strayhorn. It won the Grammy Award for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album in 1969.


Ellington recorded the album as a tribute to Billy Strayhorn, who died of cancer in May 1967.[1][2] Strayhorn was a composer, arranger, and one of Ellington's closest friends.[1]

Recording and music[edit]

The album was recorded in August and November 1967.[2] The material is Strayhorn's compositions, including some that had not previously been recorded.[1] Ellington chose the songs to demonstrate Strayhorn's versatility and range, as well as to pay homage to the qualities that he most admired in his late writing partner.[1]

"Blood Count" was Strayhorn's last composition, written for the Ellington Orchestra's 1967 concert at Carnegie Hall. Another piece with a medical-related title is "U.M.M.G.", short for 'Upper Manhattan Medical Group'.[2] The 1951 composition "Rock Skippin' at the Blue Note" showcases Cootie Williams, Jimmy Hamilton, and John Sanders.[1]


Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic5/5 stars[1]
The Penguin Guide to Jazz4/4 stars[2]

...And His Mother Called Him Bill won the Grammy Award for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album in 1969.[3] The AllMusic reviewer wrote that, "For a man who issued well over 300 albums, this set is among his most profoundly felt and very finest recorded moments."[1]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Billy Strayhorn except where noted.

2."U.M.M.G. (Upper Manhattan Medical Group)"3:13
3."Blood Count"4:19
4."Smada" (Strayhorn/Ellington)3:20
5."Rock Skippin' at the Blue Note" (Strayhorn/Ellington)3:02
6."Rain Check"4:37
8."My Little Brown Book"4:13
9."Lotus Blossom"3:57
11."After All"3:48
12."All Day Long"2:57
13."Lotus Blossom"5:01
14."Day Dream" (Strayhorn/Ellington/John La Touche)4:20
15."The Intimacy of the Blues"3:02

Source: Allmusic[1]



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Jurek, Thom. "...And His Mother Called Him Bill". AllMusic. Retrieved November 23, 2018.
  2. ^ a b c d Cook, Richard; Morton, Brian (2008). The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings (9th ed.). Penguin. p. 438. ISBN 978-0-141-03401-0.
  3. ^ "Duke Ellington". grammy.com. Retrieved November 23, 2018.
  4. ^ "...And His Mother Called Him Bill - Duke Ellington | Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 28 September 2017.