Welcome to DonEllisMusic.com (the re-launch) & About This Fan Site

By Sean Fenlon on March 12, 2014

I originally launched DonEllisMusic.com in 2001. I am happy to announce the official re-launch of DonEllisMusic.com in 2014, with a fresh new design and re-imagined as a blog.

Sean FenlonMy name is Sean Fenlon, and I am a huge

admirer of Don Ellis and his art. I was first introduced to the music of Don Ellis while I was studying composition with Hank Levy at Towson University from 1986-1990. I later attended The Peabody Institute of Music, where I completed my doctoral dissertation,

hope that the information contained within this site ultimately encourages renewed interest in the life and art of Don Ellis.

Please feel free to contact me directly to discuss Don Ellis or the information contained on this website.

Please stay tuned as I put some finishing touches on the site and begin producing new blog posts about Don Ellis.



13 responses to “Welcome to DonEllisMusic.com (the re-launch) & About This Fan Site”

  1. Eric I says:

    Sean, Anyone that loves Don’s music is a friend! Thank you!

  2. seanfenlon says:

    You are very welcome Eric. And congratulations for being the first commenter ever on the new site. 🙂 Cheers. SPF

  3. Felicity says:

    Mothers of Invention, Playboy Jazz Festival,Flugelhorn, cousin.

  4. Carl Welte says:

    Thanks for keeping this greater music alive. i saw Don and his orchestra every chance I had when he was in the SF Bay Area. Just saw Whiplash which featured Hank Levy’s band and inspired me to Google Don Ellis. Nice to have found you.

  5. Bert Dobben says:

    How is it possible that this man, the Frank Zappa of modern Jazz, is still so unknown and neglected. Even in interviews with other Jazz-musicians you seldom hear his name mentioned as an important and truly original composer.

  6. David Smith says:

    Always been a fan of jazzfunk & fusion and especially like the jazz fusion sound of Don Ellis! Have got 4 of his albums including the awesome brilliant soundtracks on cd and both the films on dvd to The French Connection (1971) and the sequel The French Connection II (1975) Love the mixture of trumpet/flugel horn/horn section/flute and orchestration etc! Was listening yesterday afternoon to The French Connection II (1975) Still can hear it in my head! Wow what a superb brilliant sound!

  7. Lloyd Jones says:

    Glad to find this site! I’ve been a Don Ellis fan for years! I’ve introduced my students to his music and they love it! Great to know there are others who respect and appreciate his music! -Lloyd Jones

  8. Umberto says:

    Hi I come from Padova, Italy. Thanks Sean for this community about one of the truly and too much underrated genius of the post-bop jazz. I think that the solo in “Upstart” (from a live album I don’t remember the title) is the most beautyful I’ve ever heard, sorry to Bix & Satchmo…

  9. Umberto says:

    Although he was not so famous in the popular culture, I think Don was representative of the quintessential values of the sixties: innovation, freedom, beauty. He tried to create a bridge between jazz and rock, along with the darker and more sophisticated Miles.

  10. Ron says:

    I was fortunate to see Don in concert twice in 1973. Amazing performances and everyone was on their feet cheering at the end. Met Don and a lot of the band members as well. A true musical visionary.

  11. Star Messenger says:

    When I read Don Ellis’ Obituary in the local newspaper where I was living I was shocked and saddened. I couldn’t believe it. Don Ellis dead at 44 years of age.

    I didn’t know it at the time that he had a heart condition so I thought his death was drug related. Don always seemed full of life, excited about new and different sounds he wanted to create. Being a former trumpet player myself, I was fascinated with his innovative four-valve-trumpet. And when he combined it with a loop-delayed-echo-chamber I was awestruck in what I heard.

    Don Ellis, one of a kind. R.I.P. Don.

  12. Redhead Left-Hand Bass Plucker says:

    Glad to find this site, Mr. Fenlon. I have a few stories of my interaction with Don and the orchestra. Maybe I can tell just one here today.
    With regard to Star Messenger’s comment about the possibility of Don’s death being drug-related, it is understandable given that era and many musician’s propensity for narcotics. But I’d like to tell a story about that. I was a young bass player in the 70s and attended the clinic Don and the Orchestra held at University of Redlands in the summer of 72. While we bass player students were hanging around together with Dave McDaniel (Don’s bass player at that time), one of the guys asked about who in the orchestra were using. Dave kinda let us know in general about this, but he made a point of saying that Don did not do any kind of drugs, he got his high from the music, just the music. That very much made a deep impression on me and I guess you could say that I followed Don’s example because if Don didn’t need to do drugs to play that great music, then I didn’t need drugs either.
    Don Ellis was simply a superb musician and person. God Bless you in His Presence, Don!
    I’m going to post this as a guest, just let me be known as The Red-Headed, Left-Handed Bass Plucker.

text/x-generic footer.php ASCII HTML document text