Charles Mingus - Mingus At Carnegie Hall 2CD
One of the most important figures in twentieth century American music, Charles Mingus was a virtuoso bass player, accomplished pianist, band leader and composer.
Born on a military base in Nogales, Arizona in 1922 and raised in Watts, California, his earliest musical influences came from the church - choir and group singing - and from 'hearing Duke Ellington over the radio when [he] was eight years old.'
His early professional experience, in the 1940s, found him touring with bands like Louis Armstrong, Kid Ory and Lionel Hampton. Mingus’ career has spanned three-decades and he collaborated with other jazz legends such as Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, and Herbie Hancock.
Mingus’ compositions retain the hot and soulful feel of hard bop, drawing heavily from black gospel music and blues, while sometimes containing elements of Third Stream, free jazz, and classical music. Because of his brilliant writing for midsize ensembles, and his catering to and emphasizing the strengths of the musicians in his groups, Mingus is often considered the heir of Duke Ellington.
From the 1960's until his death in 1979 at age 56, Mingus remained in the forefront of American music. When asked to comment on his accomplishments, Mingus said that his abilities as a bassist were the result of hard work but that his talent for composition came from God. He died in Mexico on January 5, 1979, and his wife, Sue Graham Mingus, scattered his ashes in the Ganges River in India.
Both New York City and Washington, D.C. honoured him posthumously with a Charles Mingus Day.
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