JazzTimes 10: Greatest Jazz Cameos on Pop Songs

Our choice of crossover moments to remember

Dizzy Gillespie on Stevie Wonder’s “Do I Do”
from Original Musiquarium I (1982)

Stevie Wonder is responsible for perhaps the most popular call-out to a legendary jazz musician with his composition “Sir Duke,” a lively and infectious salute to Duke Ellington and other jazz greats from his wildly successful Songs in the Key of Life album. It has been said that Wonder’s introduction of Gillespie within this tune is a direct response to the Rolling Stones omitting Rollins’ credit on Tattoo You. Or maybe it’s just plain love and respect. “I knew the title from the beginning but wanted it to be about the musicians who did something for us,” Wonder said. “So soon they are forgotten. I wanted to show my appreciation.” Indeed he did. 

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Originally Published