Uploaded on Feb 28, 2018
Leadsheet in Db Major.
"Lush Life" is a jazz standard with lyrics and music written by Billy Strayhorn from 1933 to 1938. However, the song was only performed privately by Strayhorn until he and vocalist Kay Davis performed it on November 13, 1948, with the Duke Ellington Orchestra at Carnegie Hall. It is usually performed in the key of D-flat major.
The song's lyrics describe the author's weariness of the night life after a failed romance, wasting time with "jazz and cocktails" at "come-what-may places" and in the company of girls with "sad and sullen gray faces/with distingué traces". Strayhorn was only 16 when he wrote the majority of the song, which was to become his signature composition (along with "Take the 'A' Train").
The melody is over relatively complex chord changes, compared to many jazz standards, with chromatic movement and modulations, which evoke a dreamlike state and the dissolute spirit characteristic of the so-called lush life.
|Key signature||5 flats|
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