...And His Mother Called Him Bill

...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.

...And His Mother Called Him Bill
Studio album by
RecordedAugust 28, 1967–November 15, 1967
StudioCoast Recorders, San Francisco; RCA Studio A, New York City
Length46:12 (Original LP) 71:52 (CD Re-issue)
ProducerSteve Backer, Brad McCuen
Duke Ellington chronology
North of the Border in Canada
...And His Mother Called Him Bill
Francis A. & Edward K.


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

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
The Penguin Guide to Jazz[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

All compositions by Billy Strayhorn except where noted

Side A

  1. Snibor - 4:13
  2. Boo-Dah - 3:26
  3. Blood Count - 4:16
  4. U.M.M.G. - 3:13
  5. Charpoy - 3:06
  6. After All - 3:51

Side B

  1. The Intimacy of the Blues - 2:57
  2. Raincheck - 4:35
  3. Day Dream - 4:23 (Strayhorn-Ellington)
  4. Rock Skippin' at the Blue Note - 3:01
  5. All Day Long - 2:56
  6. Lotus Blossom - 3:54
  7. Acht O'Clock Rock - 2:21 (Ellington)

Bonus Tracks

  1. Raincheck (Take 4) - 5:22
  2. Smada (Take 3) - 3:20 (Strayhorn-Ellington)
  3. Smada (Take 4) - 3:18
  4. Midriff - 4:34
  5. My Little Brown Book - 4:11
  6. Lotus Blossom (Trio Version) - 4:55



  1. Jurek, Thom. "...And His Mother Called Him Bill". AllMusic. Retrieved November 23, 2018.
  2. 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.
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