Jazz legend Charles Mingus

Charles Mingus

April 22, 1922, Nogales, AZ ~ January 5, 1979

“I've always loved '50s jazz with a bluesy vibe to it. Charles Mingus was a genius.” ~ Ian Dury

One of the most important figures in twentieth century American music, Charles Mingus was a virtuoso bass player, accomplished pianist, bandleader and composer. ~ Mingusmingusmingus.com: Charles Mingus ~ retrieved January 5, 2014 © MingusMingusMingus.com

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Andrew Homzy, a jazz historian from Canada, was cataloguing the late Charles Mingus's scores - piles of music paper stored in bags and boxes around the Manhattan apartment of his widow, Sue Mingus - when he started to find what seemed to be parts of larger pieces for jazz orchestra. One started with measure 417, another with 2,106; eventually, he realized that the stacks of frayed, yellowing, oversized manscript paper all fit together. He had found Epitaph, the Mingus magnum opus that will be performed in its entirety for the first time tomorrow night at Alice Tully Hall. […] “It's not just a bunch of strung-together pieces, like jazz suites,” Mr. Schuller said. “It has much more of an overall continuity than most extended jazz compositions.” Mr. Schuller describes Epitaph as “a summation of everything that Mingus ever did.” ~ New York Times: Reviving an ‘Epitaph,’ a symphony by Mingus ~ June 2, 1989 © New York Times

Charles Mingus ~ Inducted in the 1982 Big Band And Jazz Hall Of Fame.

Charles Mingus ~ The Black Saint And The Sinner Lady (1963) ~ Ranked #37 Jazzwise 100 Jazz Albums That Shook The World in 2006 ~ Maybe you have to acquire a taste for Mingus before getting to this, but I’ve known people with significant non-Mingus backgrounds fall headlong for it at first hearing. Whether you come from Ellington or from Coltrane or from blues-bands, there’s stuff from this almost continuous suite to captivate you. ~ 2006 © Jazzwise

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