Charles Mingus: ‘Flowers for a Lady’

20 February 2014 — Jazz on the Tube

 

I’m mad about Mingus. An unsung genius, much misunderstood and misrepresented in the media, largely because he spoke his mind on issues that many didn’t want to deal with. I saw him once at Ronnie Scott’s Club in Soho back in the 60s. Immaculate white suit, energy fizzing off him like static electricity. When the interval came, he rapidly departed the bandstand just before two men in suits appeared with bits of paper in their hands, looking for him, no doubt to hand him a writ or whatever. He reappeared later for the second set. I have no idea what was going on.

 

Aside from Ellington, Mingus was perhaps the most prolific of jazz composers but sadly much of his work has never been performed in public, let alone recorded.

 

Recorded at the Umbria Jazz Festival,Todi, Italy, 1974 and composed by multi-instrumentalist George Adams for Charles Mingus’ 1973 album “Mingus Moves,” “Flowers for a Lady” was among several tracks that marked the return of drummer Dannie Richmond after his hiatus from the group.

 

Personnel: Charles Mingus, bass; Dannie Richmond, drums; Don Pullen, piano; George Adams, tenor sax; Hamiet Bluiett, baritone sax

 

 

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