Charles Mingus & Max Roach – Percussion Discussion (1955)

From the album Mingus At The Bohemia by Charles Mingus, recorded at Cafe Bohemia, New York City, December 23, 1955.

The songs from “Cafe Bohemia” contain the typical Mingus “Jazz Workshop” characteristics. A concert as work shop meant first of all a live experiment; this is mainly true for his “guest” musician Max Roach in “Percussion Discussion”. Mingus at the Bohemia fixed a moment in time where Mingus found his musical identity.

The above mentioned “Percussion Discussion” is a duet of Mingus and Roach, which was later also used in the Epitaph suite.  Just two men playing two instruments that are very rarely found on the stand alone. Two men producing and assortment of rich and exciting sounds. Here is a chance to really enjoy the artistry of Max and Mingus. Notice the clean, true snare sound that Max gets on his highest pitched drum. As he moves from snare drum to tom-tom, there is no doubt that he’s changed intentionally. No muddled indistinct sound here but a real fresh, swinging sound for Max. And he has his earthly qualities too: strong, vigorous, earthy qualities. Mingus is tremendous, matching Max mood for mood. His pizzicato becomes so strong at times that it sounds very close to Max’s percussive effort. Also, for a new concept in jazz sounds, listen to the high, scraping sound Mingus gets on his bass immediately after Max’s cymbal entrance. [source]

Charles Mingus – Bass / Max Roach – Drums

 

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