Theres a way in which all of Duke Ellingtons music seems to have half an eye upturned toward the heavens. But in his last decade of life, he turned to creating expressly liturgical music, composing three Sacred Concerts that require a huge chorus as well as his customary big band. SRJOs performance of this music has become an annual tradition and, during a season of inescapable saccharine crap, a necessary one. The band features some of Seattles top straight-ahead players, such as Jay Thomas and Thomas Marriott on trumpet, and will be augmented this year by vocalist Dee Daniels, a sometime Northwest presence over the past few decades who couldnt keep from raising the roof if she tried.
Sat., Dec. 27, 7:30 p.m., 2008