Friday, July 3, 2009

Charles Mingus - The Great Concert Of Charles Mingus


Jazz fans in general and Charles Mingus fans in particular will want to know what makes this American issue of the 1964 Paris concert different from the previous CD version issued on import in 2000. This tour was notorious and left a lasting impression on Mingus, who related its stories and complaints for the rest of his life. This concert was notable because of the absence of trumpeter Johnny Coles, who had collapsed of a stomach ulcer two nights before. Mingus was scheduled to play on April 17 but canceled the gig in order to rework and re-rehearse the band to cover Coles' parts. This show was announced and billed for the 18th, but the musicians took the stage shortly after midnight on the 19th. The lineup of Mingus, Jaki Byard, Dannie Richmond, Eric Dolphy, and Clifford Jordan was, to say the least, formidable; they rose to the challenge and delivered one of the greatest live sets in recorded jazz history. These two CDs re-sequence the tunes in actual played order and place unreleased tracks in the proper order as well. The Byard solo ("A.T.F.W.," the initials of Art Tatum and Fats Waller) that opened the concert has never been issued before, because it had been deemed unfit for use due to technical difficulties. Likewise, after the introduction of the band and Coles' trumpet (it was displayed in its open case) comes the original version of "So Long Eric (Don't Stay Over There Too Long)." Previously a different version -- one edited from performances over two evenings -- was incorrectly titled "Goodbye Pork Pie Hat." When it was correctly titled, it was the cobbled version. This one has never been issued before. What is so remarkable about this particular gig is how much it offers in a little over two hours, Mingus sums up the past and present and points to the future. While he was still ragging on the free jazz form, his use of dissonance here, in the manner in which Byard and Dolphy engage one another, is remarkable and stunning even in the deep blues of "Orange Was the Color of Her Dress Then Blue Silk." Likewise, quoting four Charlie Parker compositions in his "Parkeriana" tribute is almost mindblowing. The only thing left out here is an encore that was not recorded due to the fact it was performed, according to Bruno Guermonprez's liner notes, after three in the morning. The sound is fine, with the exception of the first two tracks, which were less than perfect from the original sound source, but the irritation is momentary given the quality of the music. Listeners finally have an accurate portrayal of one of jazz's great historic events, 40 years after its occurrence.
All Music Guide

Charles Mingus - The Great Concert Of Charles Mingus


Recorded April, 19, 1964, live at the Theatre dês Champs-Élysées, Paris

Recorded 1964 | Label: Verve | CD: 2004

Personnel:

Charles Mingus – bass
Eric Dolphy – flute, alto saxophone, bass clarinet
Clifford Jordan – tenor saxophone
Jaki Byard – piano
Dannie Richmond - drums




Track Listing:


CD 1
1. A.T.F.W. (Art Tatum Fats Waller) [#]
2. Presentation of Musicians: Johnny Coles' Trumpet
3. So Long Eric (Don’t Stay Over There Too Long) [#]
4. Orange Was the Color of Her Dress, Then Blue Silk
5. Fables of Faubus


CD 2
1. Sophisticated Lady
2. Parkeriana (Dedicated To A Genious)
3. Meditations of Integration (Or for a Pair of Wire Cutters)

# Previously unreleased

1 comment:

Easy Jams said...

More Mingus here: http://easyjams.blogspot.com/2011/09/charles-mingus-jazz-and-cumbia-fusion.html

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