Speaks his mind on music & movies!
Can’t remember exactly how I got into Charles Mingus. I guess a natural progression in my discovery of jazz music. The opening cut of this album is titled ‘Better Git It In Your Soul’ and it’s a perfect piece for anyone’s intro into Charles Mingus’ music. I can’t even begin to describe what’s going on in this piece other than yeah it got into CB’s soul. Mingus is always taking his music somewhere and it builds. I could hear Ellington all over it. That was before I discovered what an influence Duke had on his music. Charles is his own man and uses all the music that had influenced him. He puts it through his being and comes up with his own unique style. I absolutely dig it and after repeated listens it never fails to move me and reveal more of his creativity. This is some good shit.
CM pays musical homage to people he worked with and who he loved. Duke, Lester Young, Charlie Parker, Jelly Roll Morton .. This is dense music played by the musicians Mingus brought together for the session. No passengers here. Some fantastic sax work which always grabs CB’s ears. I’d fill up a page noting all the fantastic individual playing.
My musical tastes before I found this music set me up for it. Bands like Yes, Zappa, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Steely Dan, Return To Forever, Headhunters and others trained my ear for all that was going on. This music just hit me and still does. I was never into easy listening that much and this is at the opposite end of that term. It’s not “hard listening” but it certainly is intense at times.
The music does create moods and a feel. Edgy, sultry, aggressive, quiet, loud, abrasive, noisy, avant guard. Lots of contrasts. It runs the gamut. So much creativity going on with everyone collaborating under Charles’s leadership. It’s tight but feels loose (CB you are confusing yourself again). It always amazes me where musicians get their ideas. like I said Mingus draws his inspiration from his sources and gives it his creative pulse.
This music just sounds urban/street to my ear. I bracket time for a good dose of Charles on a regular basis. This might not be instantly accessible to a lot of folks but if it grabs you like it did me you’ll be hooked. Give it a shot. Mingus was a big man with big musical ideas that work for me.
Lots written about this album if you’re inclined to search it out. Always interesting to read what folks have to say but the proof is in the listening. Expand your music library with some music from the big man. Throw on a Pork Pie hat and get some soul Charles style.
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