This album is unique in Mingus' enormous catalog. As the title indicates, the famous bassist takes to the ivories solo to give life to his dazzling improvisational art. At first it seems odd to hear Mingus without one of his trademark interactive and exploratory ensembles. But the sensibility that he brings to this collection of piano pieces bears all the signs of the composer's genius…
Of all the titles in the Impulse! 2 on 1 series, this volume may be the very finest. It pairs two indisputable classic Charles Mingus titles – both of which have endured for nearly 50 years – that were cut during the same year. While The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady was recorded on January 20, 1963, the recording that ended up as Mingus Mingus Mingus Mingus was begun that very day, but not finished until September. The former album is rightly regarded as one of (if not the) Mingus' masterpieces for its use of colors, tonalities, expansive harmonies, and the juxtaposition of numerous aspects of the jazz tradition – from Ellingtonian swing to hard bop, to West Coast and new-thing jazz – employing a vocal chorus, and even Latin and flamenco flourishes in a single conceptual work played by an 11-piece orchestra.
The first comprehensive documentary of Afro-American jazz bassist, bandleader and composer Charles Mingus. Mingus led a tumultuous life filled with trauma and frustration, joy and creativity. Not light enough to be considered white and not dark enough to fit into the black community, he was an outcast in American society who charted his own path. Likewise, his legacy as a 20th Century composer reaches far beyond conventional jazz idioms. Mingus apprenticed with people like Duke Ellington, Lionel Hampton and Charlie Parker before going out on his own and becoming a musical force for more than a decade. When interest in his music waned at the height of the rock era in the mid-1960s, and one of his closest collaborators Eric Dolphy died, he was institutionalized due to psychological problems. Upon his return to the music scene, he began playing more concerts and his sales zoomed. This golden period of recognition ended when he contracted Lou Gehrig's disease and his music began to deteriorate. He died in 1979.
Charles Mingus, one of the most creative forces in American 20th Century music, is examined in depth through archive footage and interviews with two former wives and numerous former bandmates. The music of Charles Mingus goes beyond simple categorization. Schooled in classical music, with his early professional exposure in the Los Angeles swing scene, Mingus moved through numerous styles, working with the major innovaters, such as Bud Powell, Charles Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, & Eric Dolphy. A volatile personality, his gentle and extreme sides are both in view.
"Mingus Dynasty" is an album by Charles Mingus, recorded and released in 1959, and was inducted in the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999.
It`s a second Columbia album, containing performances from two 1959 sessions.