“It Don’t Mean A Thing If It Ain’t Got That Swing”

It’s Wednesday! Your classic jazz groove for this week! Queen Ella and the Duke at the Cote d’Azur (Live at the Riviera)! Duke Ellington and Ella Fitgerald recorded live at the Jazz à Juan festival at Juan-les-Pins, on the French Riviera, between June 26 and July 29, 1966. Duke Ellington’s orchestra with one of Ella’s most brilliant scats! This song—and whole album—reminds you of why you love live music!

Check back every Wednesday for a new recommendation from Susan or Matt on a classic performance from jazz greats! You can also check for the video links on our Facebook page, so follow us there or search through our posts for past selections.

Previous selections

“Blue in Green” Miles Davis & Bill Evans

Classic Wednesday Jazz—when you feel “Blue in Green”; posted on FB July 20, 2022

Most people agree now that the song was written by Bill Evans. (Some controversy there, because Davis continued to say he wrote it.)

• Miles Davis – trumpet
• John Coltrane – tenor saxophone
• Bill Evans – piano
• Paul Chambers – double bass
• Jimmy Cobb – drums

“Blue in Green”

“In a Sentamental Mood” John Coltrane & Duke Ellington

Duke Ellington & John Coltrane – “In a Sentimental Mood” for the July 13, 2022 Wednesday Jazz Classic! Song composed by Ellington (piano), brought into modern jazz by Coltrane (tenor sax).

“In a Sentimental Mood”

Duke Ellington & John Coltrane is a jazz album by Duke Ellington and John Coltrane released in January 1963 on Impulse! Records. Ellington’s song had been a standard hit in his performances but this collaboration brought Ellington into a modern jazz quartet performing standards and some new songs outside of his typical big band framework.

Here is this week’s Wednesday jazz classic! “I’ll See You in My Dreams” performed by Django Reinhardt, virtuoso guitarist in the “jazz manouche” vein. See this Wikipedia article for a deeper dive into Django Reinhardt and his music. Check back every Wednesday for a new recommendation from Susan or Matt on a classic performance from jazz greats! You can also check for the video links on our Facebook page, so follow us there! 

NYC and Minneapolis skylines with text Big Apple, Mini-Apple

A new way
to support our music?
“35 in 22”!

We want to present the opportunity to everyone to share in what we, Matt & Susan, can do with our original songs. Would you consider a one-time gift toward supporting the costs of recording and distributing our music? Would you join 35 like-minded Insiders in making a monthly gift in 2022?  

“35 in 22” is a fun way for Insiders to show support for us and our music through a monthly gift of $5 or more, by setting up a secure and automatic donation using PayPal, all major credit cards, Apple Pay, or other payment options via our secure Ko fi donation page.

All donations go directly to Matt & Susan toward the cost of things like studio recording and the distribution of our music. A small percentage, 2-3%, goes to the payment platform, i.e., credit card, PayPal, etc., but the rest directly to us.

Will you join with us as we record our original songs at a more professional level so that the beauty of Matt’s melodies and playing and Susan’s lyrics and vocals are better heard both by you our Insiders and others who don’t know about us yet?

Thanks in advance!!
And of course, surprises await for those who donate

Did you know we have a Facebook page? We’ve recently started sharing a weekly jazz song there every Wednesday. Check out our FB page and follow us to hear a recommendation from Susan or Matt on a classic Jazz performance we want to share!

For those who can’t see the most recent song on Facebook, here is a YouTube link for the beautiful “A Flower is a Lovesome Thing,” by Billy Strayhorn, one of Matt’s piano and compositional influences. You can find the song on YouTube here: https://youtu.be/ggmWs6T4iWQ

“A Flower is a Lovesome Thing” Billy Strayhorn

Stay tuned each Wednesday for a classic jazz performance recommended by Susan & Matt!

Previous selections:

“Armando’s Rhumba” Eliane Elias & Chick Corea

Jazz pianists Eliane Elias and Chick Corea perform “Armando’s Rhumba” from Eliane’s Grammy-winning album MIRROR MIRROR, recorded soon before Corea’s death. https://youtu.be/W99lDFeowpI

“West End Blues” Louis Armstrong & His Hot Five

Click button to hear “West End Blues” on YouTube

Provided to YouTube by Columbia/Legacy West End Blues · Louis Armstrong & His Hot Five The Essential Louis Armstrong ℗ Originally released 1928. All rights reserved by Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment Released on: 1979-12-28 Producer: Unknown Trumpet, Vocal: Louis Armstrong Composer, Lyricist: Clarence Williams Banjo: Mancy Carr Composer, Lyricist: J. Oliver Drums: Zutty Singleton Piano: Earl Hines Clarinet: Jimmy Strong Trombone: Fred Robinson

“Music Brings Us Closer” An original song, written and performed, by Susan LaVelle & Matt Dorland

This is our second year for entering NPR’s Tiny Desk Contest. Last year, if you recall, we entered our song, “Silence” and this year, we’ve entered another of our favorite original songs, “Music Brings Us Closer.” Both songs reflect our commitment to bettering the world through the power of music.

2022 Tiny Desk video for “Music Brings Us Closer”

“Music Brings Us Closer” is an original song that expresses the importance of music to people of all ages. This video and recording is from the Just a Touch of Jazz entry into NPR’s 2022 Tiny Desk Contest. The Tiny Desk Concert is open to anyone (US citizens only) who creates an original song, performs it and records it in a video that shows a desk.

You can find Just a Touch of Jazz’ lyric video for “Music Brings Us Closer” here, above, and also on the Tiny Desk website. While you are there, check out the other piano and vocal duos, singer/songwriters, and bands that shared original songs to the contest.

Stayed tuned for Just a Touch of Jazz’s 2023 entry sometime in March of 2023!

Pre-save available now!

On Friday December 17, 2021, you will be able to stream and download our new holiday release, Princess Stocking. Would you like to pre-save the song on Spotify? Would you like an email reminder?

Original holiday song by Matt Dorland (piano) and Susan LaVelle (vocals), featuring Ashley Ng (violin).

“Great song! Sweet piano, lovely lyrics and vocals, beautiful!”

Susan’s podcast interview with Sharman Nittoli for “Live Your Bloom” Podcast!

Sharman is a life-long professional jazz musician and teacher in the NYC–NJ area and has written songs for and recorded by Frank Sinatra, Liza Minnelli, and others, and currently hosts a program and podcast to encourage people (Bloomers) to “Live Your Bloom” by pursuing new or renewed dream seeds that help make the most out of this life!” Podcast length: 22:19