Dave Took 5, and Sold a Million

Thanks John, love me some Dave Brubeck. Saw him two or three time when in college. Take 5 is one of the few pure jazz tunes to sell a million. - TDR

Dave was honored with an honorary doctorate at my son’s graduation from George Washington University in D.C., he was old but still had his marbles, and talked about Eisenhower sending him to play on the fringes of the Soviet Union as a kind of Ambassador. The featured speaker that day was Michelle Obama on the National Mall, and it was the stuff memories are made of.

Jazz has always been considered one of the first truly American music forms, yet for decades, it was considered an acquired taste. Jazz wasn't considered all that accessible for mainstream music listening, despite the overwhelming popularity of such early jazz artists as Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, and Glenn Miller. However, Paul Desmond wrote Take Five and it was recorded by the band he played in, the Dave Brubeck Quartet, in the summer of 1959.

Take Five was released as a single two years later, in the late spring of 1961, and it would go on to become the most popular, best-selling jazz single ever. All of a sudden, Dave Brubeck and Paul Desmond took jazz out of the realm of the beatniks and made it very cool for mainstream America to listen to and enjoy classic jazz. Paul Desmond, who wrote Take Five, did a very unusual thing at his death in 1977 and left the royalties for the performing rights to Take Five to the American Red Cross. Enjoy the full album version of THE jazz classic, Take Five.

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