Mingus Ah Um
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"Mingus Ah Um", featuring an all-star group including Jimmy Knepper, John Handy, Booker Ervin and Curtis Porter (aka Shafi Hadi), was Charles Mingus’ first LP for Columbia. The Penguin Guide to Jazz called this album “an extended tribute to ancestors” and awarded it one of their rare crowns.
Reception was also good when "Mingus Ah Um" was first issued. Leonard Feather gave the album a five-star rating in Down Beat, stating: “First let’s put your minds at ease about that weird title: it’s a corruption ofan imaginary Latin declension (mingus-minga-mingum). Don’t ask why. It seems to me that Mingus has now completely found himself, found a personal and vital direction. This is a consistently exciting and stimulating set. Mingus has something to say, knows how and through whom to say it, and it is all stated with communicative authority.”
CHARLES MINGUS, bass & leader
JIMMY KNEPPER, trombone (on A1 & Side B)
WILLIE DENNIS, trombone (on A2-A5)
BOOKER ERVIN, tenor sax
CURTIS PORTER (aka SHAFI HADI), alto & tenor sax
JOHN HANDY, alto & tenor sax, clarinet
HORACE PARLAN, piano
DANNIE RICHMOND, drums
New York, May 5 (A1 & Side B) & May 12 (A2-A5), 1959.
01 BETTER GET IT IN YOUR SOUL
02 GOODBYE PORK PIE HAT
03 BOOGIE STOP SHUFFLE
04 SELF-PORTRAIT IN THREE COLORS
05 OPEN LETTER TO DUKE
01 BIRD CALLS
02 FABLES OF FAUBUS
03 PUSSY CAT DUES
04 JELLY ROLL