Welcome to the Don Ellis Web Archive (updated October 2nd, 2011)

1. Website Updates
2. Biography
3. Discography

A. 33 1/3 rpm
B. 45 rpm
C. Cassettes
D. Unreleased Recordings
E. Posthumous Releases
F. Bootlegs, etc.
G. CD Reissues
H. Sideman Appearances
I. Misc. Appearances

4. Bibliography

A. Books
B. Articles

5. Videography

A. DVD releases

6. Filmography (film scores)
7. Sessionography

A. 1950-1959
B. 1960-1969
C. 1970-1978

© 1974 DownBeat Magazine

Website Updates

October 2nd, 2011

This site is no longer being actively updated. Please enjoy the site! Check Discogs.com for Don Ellis updates.



Short version:

Don Ellis was a trumpet player.

Long version:




Recorded appearances by Don Ellis.

A. 33 1/3 rpm

...with small groups

...How Time Passes... [1960]
New Ideas [1961]
Essence [1962]

...with the Don Ellis Orchestra

'Live' at Monterey! [1966]
Live in 3 2/3 4 Time [1967]
Electric Bath [1967]
Shock Treatment [1967]
Autumn [1968]
The New Don Ellis Band Goes Underground [1969]
Live at Fillmore [1970]
Tears of Joy [1971]
Connection [1972]
Soaring [1974]
Music from Other Galaxies and Planets [1977]
Live at Montreux [1977]

...with other large groups

Haiku [1974]


Jamboree 1962 EP [1962]
[untitled EP] [?]
Voices of Vista #55 [1967?]
New Rhythms [1972]
Here's to Veterans [197?]
Star Wars EP [1977?]

B. 45 rpm singles

33 222 1 222/Concerto for Trumpet [1966]
Barnum's Revenge/Thetis [1967]
Spring Affair/Lady Night [1967]
In Your Arms/A Quiet Place [1967]
Indian Lady/Turkish Bath [1968]
Star Children/Homecoming [1968?]
Eli's Comin'/Child of Ecstasy [1968?]
Pussy Wiggle Stomp/Hey Jude [1970?]
Tears of Joy/Quiet Longing [1971?]
Go Back Home/Image of Maria [1973]
Image of Maria/Whiplash [1973]
Star Wars/Princess Leia's Theme [1977]

C. Cassettes

Live! [1975]

D. Unreleased Recordings

New Sounds for the 60's [1960]
Improvisations [1960]

E. Posthumous CD Releases

Out of Nowhere [1988]
The French Connection [2001]
A Simplex One [2002]

F. Illegitimate Releases ("Bootlegs")

Live with the Ohio State University Big Band [1977]
How Time Passes (compilation) [1991]
Giants of Jazz [1998]
Connection/Reaction [????]

G. CD Reissues

New Ideas [1990]
'Live' at Monterey! [1998]
Electric Bath [1998]
Live in 3 2/3 4 Time [2000]
Shock Treatment [2001]
Live at Montreux [2002]
Tears of Joy [2005]
Connection [2005]
At Fillmore [2005]
Essence [2005]
The New Don Ellis Band Goes Underground [2005]
Pieces of Eight [2006]
Music from Other Galaxies and Planets [2006]
...How Time Passes... [2007]
Autumn [2007]
Out of Nowhere [2007]

H. Sideman Appearances

Maynard Ferguson: A Message from Birdland [1959]
Maynard Ferguson: Plays Jazz for Dancing [1959]
Maynard Ferguson: Newport Suite [1960]
Charles Mingus: Mingus Dynasty [1960]
George Russell: George Russell in Kansas City [1961]
George Russell: Ezz-thetics [1961]
George Russell: The Stratus Seekers [1962]
George Russell: The Outer View [1962]
George Russell: Outer Thoughts [1962; compilation]
Eric Dolphy: Vintage Dolphy [1963]
Tommy Vig: 1978 [1978]

I. Misc. Appearances

Leonard Bernstein: Conducts Music for Our Time [1965]
Frank Zappa & the Mothers of Invention: Absolutely Free [1967]
The United States of America [1968]
Krzysztof Komeda: Rosemary's Baby (soundtrack) [1968]
Al Kooper: I Stand Alone [1968]
Dave Grusin: Candy (soundtrack) [1969]
The Atlantic Family: Live at Montreux [1978]
Nick Gilder:


Tracks from Ellis' albums have appeared on numerous promotional compilations released by Columbia and other companies. They are scattered about, particularly in the sessionography.




By Ellis

The Element of "Corn" in Jazz Improvisation [1959, unpublished]
Warsaw Diary [January 3rd, 1963, DownBeat]
An Introduction to Indian Music for the Jazz Musician (co-written with Hari Har Rao) [April 1965, Jazz Magazine]
The Avant-Garde is not Avant-Garde [June 30th, 1966, DownBeat]
Don Ellis - Blindfold Test [April 17th, 1969 DownBeat]

About Ellis

Ellis Through the Looking Glass [by Harvey Siders - April 16th, 197-, DownBeat]
This is the Don Ellis Interview [by Patricia Willard, DownBeat]
Yet Another Phase [by Harvey Siders - April 13th, 197-, DownBeat]
Don Ellis: Most Alive and Well [by Don Heckman - January 16th, 1977, DownBeat]
Albums Revive Bandleader Ellis' Legacy [by Don Heckman - August 14th, 1998, Los Angeles Times]


By Ellis

the new rhythm book [1972]
quarter tones [1975]
Rhythm (unpublished) [1977]

About Ellis

Agostinelli, Anthony. "Don Ellis: a Man for our Time (1934-1978)."
Feather, Leonard. "From Satchmo to Miles". New York: Stein and Day, 1972.

Feather dedicates 14 pages to discussing Ellis.


Fenlon, Sean. "The Exotic Rhythms of Don Ellis". Diss. The Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, 2002.



Appearances by Don Ellis on official video releases


Don Ellis: Sights & Sounds [2005]



Films and television programs for which Don Ellis has written music.

Moon Zero Two [1969]
The French Connection [1971]
Kansas City Bomber [1972]
The Seven-Ups [1973]
Movin' On [1974]
The French Connection II [1975]
Sniper/The Deadly Tower [1975]
Ruby [1977]
Maniac [1977]
Natural Enemies [1979]

(Film is not really my area of expertise; if anyone could help out with this, please let me know.)



Recording sessions/live concert setlists from throughout Ellis' career. (This is slowly changing into a "gig-ography" of sorts.)

Information for these sessions came from various sources: the UCLA Don Ellis Collection mostly, but also magazines and emails from fans with information.

A. 1950-1959

B. 1960-1969

C. 1970-1978


If you have any information to add, please email me.