One of the least-used compliments in the average critic's vocabulary is the word "consistent"; few scribes come out of a great concert exclaiming, "That was one of the most consistent shows ever!" But consistency is an important artistic attribute, particularly for a performer who hungers for career longevity, and Duke Ellington was blessed with a surplus of it. His recordings cover a span from the 1920s to the 1970s, yet Ellington never seems to have phoned in any of them. His work is invariably marked by great care and greater professionalism -- and if scribes don't often use those terms, either,... More >>>