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“I knew Duke Ellington for over 25 years. Duke was my mentor. The Ellington in this book is the man I knew.”
Nat Hentoff


“In schools where students are lucky enough to experience classroom jazz studies, this title, combining rich musical history and a ‘you are there’ approach, is a natural.” —Kirkus
Riding on Duke's Train
winner, 2010 Leapfrog Fiction Contest

Adopted by Jazz at Lincoln Center's Education Department
An animated film in production by Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Ken Kimmelman, with original music by Art Baron, Duke Ellington Orchestra trombonist
Nine-year-old Danny, recently orphaned, hitches a ride on a train one night in 1937 Georgia—the train of Duke Ellington and His Famous Orchestra. Through Danny’s eyes, we meet some of America’s finest musicians, including of course, Edward Kennedy “Duke” Ellington, and we accompany the band on its 1939 European tour, where it was briefly held in Nazi Germany.

“Duke used to say that the individual sound of a musician revealed his soul. Mick Carlon is a ’soul’ storyteller.”
Nat Hentoff


“This enthralling book is an adventure story with a smart, historical framework, one that has been lauded by jazz critics and those who knew the Duke.” ForeWord Reviews Recommended Books for Middle Readers
“This is one train you won't want to get off.”
Dick Golden

“A ripping good yarn.” —Brian Morton, author of The Penquin Guide to Jazz
Riding on Duke's Train by Mick Carlon
Watch a clip of Mick Carlon, of Centerville, Mass., giving an introduction to Duke Ellington for a concert of Ellington songs.

Read Mick Carlon's columns in Jazz Times.

Mick Carlon has just been honored by the Massachusetts Teachers Association with the Kathleen Roberts Creative Leadership Award for 2013.
"The MTA has presented annual civil rights awards since 1983 in recognition of organizations and individuals who have advocated for issues that are of importance to human and civil rights. The Committee members are impressed by how you have built your passion and knowledge about jazz into a creative and powerful vehicle for young people to learn about this unique American art form and America's cultural history."



ISBN: 978-1-935248-06-4$9.95 • December 2011A LeapKids Bookwww.leapfrogpress.com