Sweet Pea - Billy Strayhorn Story

Russell Davies presents a new series profiling the life and career of pianist, composer and Duke Ellington's famous collaborator, Billy 'Sweet Pea' Strayhorn, who died in 1967.

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Born in Dayton, Ohio, in 1915, the young Strayhorn offered his composition Lush Life to Duke Ellington in 1938.

Less than a year later, Strayhorn had become an arranger and pianist with the Ellington band, a collaboration that was to last until Strayhorn's death.