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Paris 1964 (Live)

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Album Review

Bassist Charles Mingus is back in the limelight. Mosaic and Rhino have recently issued nice sets, with Mosaic finally putting out his late '50s Columbia material in the fashion in which it was originally recorded. This concert date featured one of Mingus' greatest bands; it had two saxophonists in Eric Dolphy and Clifford Jordan, plus pianist Jaki Byard and drummer Dannie Richmond. Mingus created expansive, works-in-progress compositions, letting his band react, interact, develop, tear apart and reconstruct his music. Dolphy and Jordan played intense, animated, surging solos, and Dolphy's furious alto sax and bass clarinet are contrasted by an evocative lyricism on flute. The sound quality is great and the performances unforgettable.


Born: 22 April 1922 in Nogales, AZ

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s

Irascible, demanding, bullying, and probably a genius, Charles Mingus cut himself a uniquely iconoclastic path through jazz in the middle of the 20th century, creating a legacy that became universally lauded only after he was no longer around to bug people. As a bassist, he knew few peers, blessed with a powerful tone and pulsating sense of rhythm, capable of elevating the instrument into the front line of a band. But had he been just a string player, few would know his name today. Rather, he was...
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