Fitzgerald, Ella

On these pages we present Jazz Lines Publications editions of some of Ella's greatest recordings, including many from the Grammy-winning Ella Fitzgerald Sings the George and Ira Gershwin Song Book. We also have Lush Life transcriptions of many of her other most memorable tunes.

 


 

Truly the First Lady of Song, Ella Fitzgerald was one of the greatest singers in American history. As her official website perfectly states, "Her voice was flexible, wide-ranging, accurate, and ageless. She could sing sultry ballads, sweet jazz, and imitate every instrument in an orchestra." She enthralled audiences all over the world for decades, worked with everyone from Duke, Dizzy, and Count Basie to Nat King Cole and Sinatra, and left a recorded legacy that is second to none.

Born Ella Jane Fitzgerald on April 25, 1917 in Newport News, Virginia, Ella endured some rough times as a child. Following the split of her parents, she moved with her mother to Yonkers, NY, and sadly lost her mother at age 15. Fighting poverty, Ella eventually used these difficult times as motivation in life, and continued to harbor dreams of being an entertainer. She made her public singing debut at the Apollo Theater in Harlem on November 21, 1934 at age 17. Buoyed by her success, she continued to enter and win singing contests, and soon was singing with Chick Webb's band. In 1938 she quickly gained acclaim with her version of A-Tisket, A Tasket, which was a huge success and made her famous at age 21; for over 50 years she remained a star. 

Following Webb's death in 1939, Ella briefly led the band, and soon struck out on her own as a solo artist, taking on various projects as well as making her film debut. While on tour with Dizzy Gillespie in the mid-1940s, Ella began to respond to the massive changes in the jazz world, as swing was giving way to bebop; she began incorporating scat singing into her repertoire as a reaction to the improvisational nature of bebop. As she recalled years later "I just tried to do [with my voice] what I heard the horns in the band doing." During this period, she also met bassist Ray Brown, whom she was to marry and adopt a son with. Through Brown, she met jazz impresario and producer Norman Granz, and this relationship led to her greatest stardom and achievements.

Ella joined Granz's Jazz at the Philharmonic Tour, recorded classic albums with Louis Armstrong, and from 1956-1964 worked on what may be her greatest legacy, the Song Book series, featuring the music of Cole Porter, Rodgers and Hart, Duke Ellington, Irving Berlin, the Gershwins, Harold Arlen, Jerome Kern, and Johnny Mercer. It can be argued that along with the seminal work of Frank Sinatra, these records created some of the greatest and most definitive versions of a huge portion of what comprises the Great American Songbook. Ira Gershwin famously remarked, "I never knew how good our songs were until I heard Ella Fitzgerald sing them." Ella also did what music can uniquely do in tying together many strands of American culture at a time when race relations were a major issue in American society. Critic Frank Rich expressed it so well shortly after Ella's death, writing about her Song Book series: "Here was a black woman popularizing urban songs often written by immigrant Jews to a national audience of predominantly white Christians."

"I never knew how good our songs were until I heard Ella Fitzgerald sing them,

Ella toured constantly during these years, and she and Granz did their part to help the burgeoning civil rights movement, fighting inequality and discrimination at every turn, bravely even in the Deep South. During the 1960s Ella continued to tour and record, also appearing in movies and being a regular guest on all of the most popular talk and variety TV shows. Throughout the 1970s, she kept touring all over the world, and became even more well-known through a series of high-profile ad campaigns. Anyone who grew up in the 1970s remembers Ella's "Is it live or is it Memorex" commercials.

One of the lesser-known aspects of her life at the time was her charitable side. She was known as a very shy person who was protective of her privacy. As a way to help others avoid what she went through as a child, she gave frequent generous donations to all sorts of groups and organizations that helped underprivileged youth, and her official website even suggests that continuing to be able to this was a major driving force behind the unrelenting touring schedule she continued to maintain. She cared for her sister Frances' family after Frances passed as well.

By the 1980s, she had acquired countless awards and honors, among them 13 Grammies including the Lifetime Achievement Award and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. But the endless touring schedule did begin to take its toll, and Ella began to experience serious diabetes-related health problems. From the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s she suffered a series of surgeries and hospital stays, and by 1996 she had tired of spending so much time in hospitals. She spent her last days enjoying being outdoors at her Beverly Hills home, sitting outside and simply being with she and Ray Brown's adopted son Ray, Jr. and her granddaughter Alice. Many sources report that duing her last days she reportedly said, "I just want to smell the air, listen to the birds, and hear Alice laugh." 

She died in her home on June 15, 1996 at the age of 79, and the tributes were instant, huge, and international. Befitting someone of her stature, who was at the pinnacle of the entertaining world for nearly half a century and left behind a legacy that will never diminish in its beauty and importance, her archival material and arrangements reside at the Library of Congress and the Smithsonian.

There are few figures in American history who left behind what Ella did. A shy, reticent woman from very humble beginnings, she thrilled countless millions all over the world with her beautiful voice and her singular way of interpreting a tune. She sang in so many styles, worked with so many of the best composers and arrangers in the music business, performed with most of the other greatest stars of her era, and left a body of work that truly enhances the American experience.

 

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ELLA AND BASIE! AS ARRANGED BY QUINCY JONES: JAZZ LINES PUBLICATIONS SIX ARRANGEMENT SET

As Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald with the Count Basie Orchestra

Arranged by Quincy Jones

Six Jazz Big Band Arrangements with Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-1064

$350.00

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ELLA AND BASIE! AS ARRANGED BY QUINCY JONES: JAZZ LINES PUBLICATIONS SIX ARRANGEMENT SET [DOWNLOAD]

As Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald with the Count Basie Orchestra

Arranged by Quincy Jones

Six Jazz Big Band Arrangements with Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-1064DL

$350.00

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ELLA FITZGERALD JAZZ LINES PUBLICATIONS SERIES: TWELVE ARRANGEMENT SET

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Nelson Riddle, Billy May, Billy Strayhorn, and Buddy Bregman; Prepared for Publication by Rob DuBoff and Jeffrey Sultanof

Twelve Jazz Big Band and Studio Orchestra Arrangements With Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-1005

$675.00

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ELLA FITZGERALD JAZZ LINES PUBLICATIONS SERIES: TWELVE ARRANGEMENT SET [DOWNLOAD]

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Nelson Riddle; Prepared for Publication by Rob DuBoff and Jeffrey Sultanof

Twelve Jazz Big Band Arrangements With Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-1005DL

$655.00

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ELLA FITZGERALD LUSH LIFE TRANSCRIPTIONS: NINE ARRANGEMENT SET

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Ella Fitzgerald

Nine Jazz Big Band Arrangements With Vocal

Lush Life Music

LL-1001

$520.00

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ELLA FITZGERALD SINGS THE GEORGE AND IRA GERSHWIN SONG BOOK: JAZZ LINES PUBLICATIONS SERIES TEN ARRANGEMENT SET

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Nelson Riddle, Prepared for Publication by Rob DuBoff and Jeffrey Sultanof

Ten Jazz Big Band and Jazz Studio Orchestra Arrangements With Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-1037

$535.00

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ELLA FITZGERALD TWENTY ARRANGEMENT SUPERSET

Ella Fitzgerald

Twenty Jazz Big Band Arrangements With Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications and Lush Life Music

JLP-1042

$975.00

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ELLA FITZGERALD'S CHRISTMAS: COMPLETE 13 ARRANGEMENT SET

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Grace Price and Robert Black, Prepared by Jeffrey Sultanof and Rob DuBoff

13 Jazz Vocal Arrangements

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-1046

$350.00

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ELLA FITZGERALD'S CHRISTMAS: COMPLETE 13 ARRANGEMENT SET [DOWNLOAD]

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Grace Price and Robert Black, Prepared by Jeffrey Sultanof and Rob DuBoff

13 Jazz Vocal Arrangements

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-1046DL

$350.00

More Info

ELLA WISHES YOU A SWINGING CHRISTMAS: JAZZ LINES PUBLICATIONS SEVEN ARRANGEMENT SET

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Frank DeVol, Prepared by Rob DuBoff and Jeffrey Sultanof

Seven Jazz Studio Ensemble with Solo Vocal and SATTBB Voices and Jazz Little Big Band With Vocal Arrangements

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-1040

$300.00

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ELLA WISHES YOU A SWINGING CHRISTMAS: JAZZ LINES PUBLICATIONS SEVEN ARRANGEMENT SET [DOWNLOAD]

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Frank DeVol, Prepared by Rob DuBoff and Jeffrey Sultanof

Seven Jazz Studio Ensemble with Solo Vocal and SATTBB Voices and Jazz Little Big Band With Vocal Arrangements

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-1040DL

$300.00

More Info

NELSON RIDDLE JAZZ LINES PUBLICATIONS ELEVEN ARRANGEMENT SET

As Recorded by Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, and Dean Martin

Arranged by Nelson Riddle

Eleven Jazz Big Band Arrangements/Studio Orchestra Arrangements With Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-1031

$625.00

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'DEED I DO

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald with Count Basie

Arranged by Quincy Jones, Prepared for Publication by Dylan Canterbury, Rob DuBoff, and Jeffrey Sultanof

Jazz Big Band Arrangement with Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-9639

$75.00

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View: 'DEED I DO [DOWNLOAD]
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'DEED I DO [DOWNLOAD]

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald with Count Basie

Arranged by Quincy Jones, Prepared for Publication by Dylan Canterbury, Rob DuBoff, and Jeffrey Sultanof

Jazz Big Band Arrangement with Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-9639DL

$75.00

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'S WONDERFUL

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Nelson Riddle, Prepared by Rob DuBoff, Jeffrey Sultanof, and Dylan Canterbury

Jazz Studio Orchestra Arrangement with Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-9461

$75.00

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'S WONDERFUL [DOWNLOAD]

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Nelson Riddle, Prepared by Rob DuBoff, Jeffrey Sultanof, and Dylan Canterbury

Jazz Studio Orchestra Arrangement with Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-9461DL

$75.00

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View: (I'M) BIDIN' MY TIME
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(I'M) BIDIN' MY TIME

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Nelson Riddle, Prepared by Rob DuBoff and Jeffrey Sultanof

Jazz Studio Orchestra Arrangement with Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-9415

$75.00

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(I'M) BIDIN' MY TIME [DOWNLOAD]

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Nelson Riddle, Prepared by Rob DuBoff and Jeffrey Sultanof

Jazz Studio Orchestra Arrangement with Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-9415DL

$75.00

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View: (OUR) LOVE IS HERE TO STAY
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(OUR) LOVE IS HERE TO STAY

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Nelson Riddle, Edited by Rob DuBoff and Jeffrey Sultanof

Jazz Studio Orchestra Arrangement with Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-9320

$75.00

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(OUR) LOVE IS HERE TO STAY [DOWNLOAD]

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Nelson Riddle, Edited by Rob DuBoff and Jeffrey Sultanof

Jazz Studio Orchestra Arrangement with Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-9320DL

$75.00

More Info
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A TISKET, A TASKET

As Performed by Ella Fitzgerald

Transcribed and Adapted by Klaus Lessmann

Jazz Big Band Arrangement With Vocal

Lush Life Music

LL-2032

$65.00

Our Price: $61.75

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ACCENTUATE THE POSITIVE

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Billy May, Transcribed by Myles Collins

Jazz Big Band Arrangement with Vocal

Lush Life Music

LL-2317

$65.00

Our Price: $61.75

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ACE IN THE HOLE

Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Buddy Bregman, Transcribed and Adapted by Myles Collins

Jazz Big Band Arrangement with Vocal

Lush Life Music

LL-2281

$65.00

Our Price: $61.75

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AFTER YOU'VE GONE

As Recorded by Ella Fitzgerald

Arranged by Bill Doggett, Prepared for Publication by Dylan Canterbury, Rob DuBoff, and Jeffrey Sultanof

Jazz Big Band Arrangement with Vocal

Jazz Lines Publications

JLP-6342

$75.00

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