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Take the A Train

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Take The A Train was written in 1939 by Billy Strayhorn for the Duke Ellington Orchestra. The title refers to the, at the time, new A train service in New York City. Ellington’s son, Mercer, recalled that he found A Train in the trash. Strayhorn originally thought it sounded too much like a Fletcher Henderson arrangement. The song was inspired by directions that Ellington gave Strayhorn to his place in Harlem upon offering him a job working for the orchestra. This tune became a signature piece of the Ellington Orchestra and is one of the most famous works that the Strayhorn/Ellington collaboration produced.

This tune is most commonly played in the key of C major.

Videos to learn the melody/changes

Camden Hugheshttp://camdenhughes.com/
Camden is a working jazz pianist, multi-instrumentalist, and music educator currently living near Boise, ID. He teaches music at the Idaho Arts Charter School, and is the jazz adjunct professor at Northwest Nazarene University. Check out his music at www.camdenhughesmusic.com.

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