Twenty-five years ago in his hit song, "Sir Duke," Stevie Wonder sings: "Music knows it is and always will be one of the things that life just won't quit. / Here are some of music's basic pioneers that time will not allow us to forget: / There's Basie, Miller, Satchmo, and the King of All, Sir Duke! / And with a voice like Ella's ringing out, there's no way the band can lose! / You can feel it all over!" To say that Ellington was a prominent jazz-band leader of the twentieth century would be like saying William Shakespeare was simply a prominent English playwright of the time. This book begins with personal reflections as well as the life before going on to consider--through anecdote, musical scholarship, and personal interviews--Ellington's profound and direct influence on an amazing range of pop artists: Stevie Wonder, Steely Dan, Miles Davis (who, in the ultimate tribute, had himself interred next to The Duke in New York's Woodlawn Cemetery), Sun Ra, James Brown, Sly Stone, George Clinton, Prince, Frank Zappa, Charles Mingus, and Ravi Shankar.