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Mingus Dynasty: Live at the Village Vanguard

Album Notes

Of the five musicians on this set (which include trumpeter Randy Brecker, pianist Roland Hanna, bassist Richard Davis and drummer Kenny Washington), only tenor saxophonist George Adams was closely associated with bassist Charles Mingus. Although the programming is a bit odd and a band really needs more than two horns to bring back the spirit of Mingus' music, the CD is better than expected. "Peggy's Blue Skylight" is heard in a 1«-minute excerpt from Hanna's unaccompanied piano solo. "Mr. Jelly Roll Soul" is a big success for the rhythm section grasps the feel of early jazz, Brecker has the right ideas in his solo approach and Adams' R&Bish honking tenor also fits in with the joyful mood. Two lengthy ballads (Brecker's feature on "The Man Who Never Sleeps" and a strong version of "Duke Ellington's Sound of Love") precede "Better Get Hit in Your Soul." As an anti-climatic encore, the final two minutes of Adams' feature on "Goodbye Pork Pie Hat" concludes the set. Considering that this CD only has 44« minutes of music, it is unfortunate that the entire versions of "Peggy's Blue Skylight" and "Goodbye Pork Pie Hat" could not have been included. But, that quibble aside, this is a fine tribute to the unique and colorful music of Charles Mingus. ~ Scott Yanow


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