Cincinnati Babyhead

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Quick Hit : Hal Willner Presents Meditations On Mingus – Weird Nightmare

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From the opening intro you know (or CB did) that you’re in for some kind of a ride. Willner along with Bill Frisell and the gathered musicians (top notch) set the tone and the vibe early. Being a Mingus fan and having dug Willner’s Disney album I was anticipating this music. There is so much going on to digest. Not an easy laid back listen. Like Mingus it stirs up many moods, styles and never plays it straight. Lots of shifts in tempo.

Hal uses the base musicians to back up the guests. Robbie Robertson, Henry Rollins, Chuck D, Keith Richards. All have a career in “Talk Jazz” if they ever want it and I would be all over it. So many good folks on this record, Elvis Costello, Charlie Watts, Vernon Reid, Dr John and many more. Talking about this music should be left to others more capable. For me it is a listening experience that I really go for. Under it all is Charles’s presence and Willner never loses sight or feel of that. He brings in the right personnel (and they all contribute in a big way). I think he catches the inspiration and what moved him from Mingus’ work which is no easy job.

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If you don’t like Charles Mingus music this album won’t change your mind. If you do like his music I think you will really dig it. If you’re new to the music and it grabs you, you’re in for a treat.

Bracket some time and take a ride on the Mingus/Willner excursion into a weird nightmare. The trip starts when you press play or put the needle down. This is some good jazz Mingus style.

(The links below feature Robbie  Robertson, Henry Rollins, Chuck D respectfully. Last cut is a big band cut with Charlie Watts on drums who is a jazz guy at heart).

(There are very good accompanying notes. Hal gives a nod to Harry Patch who is worth some time exploring)

 

 

 

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14 comments on “Quick Hit : Hal Willner Presents Meditations On Mingus – Weird Nightmare

  1. Jim S.
    March 3, 2019

    Ok. I never heard of Willner or any of this. (Minus Mingus.) I haven’t checked out the tunes yet but this is to acknowledge and let you know that CB is hijacking all of ME’s music listening time with these cuts.

    Liked by 2 people

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      March 3, 2019

      Your buddy Richards drops a good one also. You do the “hijacking” thing to me all the time. Interested what you think of Frisell as a player?

      Like

      • Jim S.
        March 3, 2019

        I can’t say I know much about Frisell at all.

        Liked by 1 person

      • cincinnatibabyhead
        March 3, 2019

        He has his own sound for sure. I’ve been listening to his ‘Guitar In The Space Age’ album (because of you and Spotify). He does some covers that you might find very cool.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Yeah, Another Blogger
    March 3, 2019

    Mingus was so great. He’s in my top 10 jazz guys. Maybe top 5. I listened recently to Cumbia And Jazz Fusion, which was one of his final studio albums. You probably know it. It’s real good. Bye till next time!

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      March 3, 2019

      ‘Cumbia & ..’ is long over due on the spin list. Like a lot of jazz people his recordings are extensive and are so dense in the listening that I tend to live in certain ones for ever knowing there are more treasures to come. Case in point the album you just recommended. Like a good cigar or a beer you’ve had your eye on. You know it will be good.
      Totally agree on one of your top jazz guys. Me too. Been listening to ‘Money Jungle’ with Charles, Max and Duke. hotfox63 just did a good piece on it. Thanks for dropping by Neil.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. greenpete58
    March 3, 2019

    I’ve heard of the name, but don’t know anything about Willner (assume he’s a music producer?). Well aware of Mingus, and have two of his CDs (three if you count the infamous Massey Hall gig with Parker, Gillespie, Roach, and Powell). He’s always been difficult for me to listen to, similar to Monk, I guess because he’s so unconventional. But a legend, for sure.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. 1537
    March 4, 2019

    This is right up my alley CB. Added to my (never-ending) list.

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      March 4, 2019

      Yeah I think you’d dig it for a lot of your own reasons.
      You are guilty of adding to my “never ending” list. I see you have a take on Floyd’s ‘Interstellar’. An all time fave. Be over to check in.

      Like

  5. J.
    March 4, 2019

    This is quite something. I need to get this and take it all in. So much goodness here… I definitely need to put some time aside for this.

    Like

  6. christiansmusicmusings
    March 5, 2019

    This surely sounds very intriguing, CB. I’ve never heard of Hal Willner and essentially only know Charles Mingus by name – not much of a jazz guy, as you know!😀

    But, when you have Keith Richards and all these other stellar musicians play on an album, you know there must be something special. So I’m definitely going to check it out.

    Annoyingly, the record isn’t available in my streaming service, so have to look on YouTube. For some reason, the clips you embedded don’t play on my phone – maybe it’s too smart for me!🤣

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      March 5, 2019

      That’s disappointing that you don’t get a taste. Worth checking out Christain. Yeah a lot of diverse players on the record. Willner uses them to create his mood. You gotta check out Richards version of ‘Oh Lord Don’t Let Them Drop That Atomic Bomb On Me’. It’s a high-lite

      Liked by 1 person

  7. catchgroove
    March 8, 2019

    I’m intrigued. I am a big Mingus fan. Joni Mitchell turned me on to him at the end of the 70s.

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      March 8, 2019

      “Meditations’is the key word. The people making the music are also big “fans”. I’m sure you will get something to chew on with this one. There’s lots.
      (Just groovin to some John Scofield and watching the hockey game)

      Liked by 1 person

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