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||Money Jungle||Duke Ellington||5:29||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||Fleurette Africaine||Duke Ellington||3:36||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||Very Special||Duke Ellington||4:26||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||Warm Valley||Duke Ellington||3:32||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||Wig Wise||Duke Ellington||3:20||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||Caravan||Duke Ellington||4:12||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||Solitude||Duke Ellington||5:33||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||Switch Blade||Duke Ellington||5:24||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||A Little Max (Parfait)||Duke Ellington||2:58||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||REM Blues||Duke Ellington||4:18||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||Backward Country Boy Blues||Duke Ellington||6:33||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||Solitude||Duke Ellington||4:44||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||Switch Blade||Duke Ellington||5:13||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||A Little Max (Parfait)||Duke Ellington||2:57||$1.29||View in iTunes|
||REM Blues||Duke Ellington||5:45||$1.29||View in iTunes|
Duke Ellington created some of the 20th century's most graceful and winsome music, and to be sure, those more elegant aspects of his personality shine through on many of these cuts. But for the most part, this album is difficult, chaotic, and intense listening. For this 1962 juggernaut, Ellington formed a piano trio with two next-generation stars: Charlie Mingus on bass and Max Roach on drums. Ellington was a hero to Mingus, yet here the thorny bassist seems intent on riling, prodding, and irritating the legendary pianist while Roach tries desperately to keep some sort of order. Ellington certainly doesn't shrink from the fight, offering some of his most challenging, discordant, far-reaching piano work. Listen to the dissonant, rumbling title track or the jolting "Wig Wise" or the sharp-toothed blues "Very Special," and it's hard to believe it's the Duke. Yet most impressively, it sounds like only Duke and nobody else. Enchanting solo readings of older cuts like "Solitude" and "Warm Valley" provide brief respites from the battle, and "Flurette Africaine" is lovely beyond words.
Money Jungle, Kind of Blue, and Soul Station are my three favorite jazz albums of all time. Listening to Money Jungle makes me think Ellington, Mingus, and Roach were holed up for a couple of days in the studio with either a case of gin or tequila and this is what came out. While Mobley’s Soul Station is lyrical and somewhat subdued, Money Jungle is wild and beautiful.
If you are an Ellington fan (and if you’re not, you don’t enjoy music), this is a revelatory album. His playing is truly an amalgam of vintage and ‘60s near experimental. Not out-there Mingus, but he doesn’t just accompany by any means...
The first time these three legends shared a studio or a song, it was on a Monday, by Tuesday this album had been conceived, born and perfected. Truly amazing.
Born: April 29, 1899 in Washington D.C.
Years Active: '20s, '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s