Q (7/93, p.110) - 4 Stars - Excellent - "...at his best he could drive his fellow musicians onwards and upwards with big bass playing and hoarse exhortations. BLUES & ROOTS contains six servings of this brilliance..."
Down Beat (1960) - 4 Stars - Very Good - "...vital and important music...[Mingus] is outstanding in his solo work...this is something worth careful and thorough listening..."
Record Collector (magazine) (p.96) - 5 stars out of 5 -- "[A] classic 1957 set showcasing Mingus' compositional genius as well as his unerring ability at getting the best from his sidemen."
The 1998 reissue of BLUES & ROOTS contains all the original tracks and liner notes, plus additional tracks and rare photos.
Personnel: Charles Mingus (bass); Jackie McLean, John Handy (alto saxophone); Booker Ervin (tenor saxophone); Pepper Adams (baritone saxophone); Jimmy Knepper, Willie Dennis (trombone); Horace Parlan, Mal Waldron (piano); Dannie Richmond (drums).
Recorded at Atlantic Studios, New York, New York on February 4, 1959. Originally released on Atlantic (1305). Includes liner notes by Charles Mingus.
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
Mingus goes to church. A thrilling album of blues and spirituals Mingus style. This 1959 Atlantic recording certainly ranks among his very best. Memorable performances of some of the bassist's most soulful tunes such as "Wednesday Night Prayer Meeting" and "E's Flat Ah's Flat Too." Mingus is joined by an exuberant ensemble including a stellar saxophone section of Jackie McLean, John Handy, Booker Ervin, and Pepper Adams.
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