JAZZ APPRECIATION MONTH 2022: Celebrating Charles Mingus' Centenary with MINGUS THREE

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

This year, Rhino is kicking off Jazz Appreciation Month (April) with one of the most influential figures in 20th century American music, Charles Mingus, who would have turned 100 on April 22. In 2022, Mingus’ legacy will be in the spotlight with the release of a deluxe edition of his album, Mingus Three, just in time for his centenary as a virtuoso bass player, an accomplished pianist, bandleader, and composer.

Rhino will salute Mingus with an updated version of his 1957 trio recording with pianist Hampton Hawes and drummer Dannie Richmond. The seven original tracks have been expanded for the upcoming release, with eight previously unreleased session recordings discovered by chance recently in the London Parlophone vaults. The bonus tracks include different takes for all but one album track ("Laura"), plus two blues originals.

MINGUS THREE: DELUXE EDITION will be available on April 22 – Mingus’ birthday – as a 180-gram double-LP set ($34.98) and as a double-CD set ($24.98). The music will also be available from digital and streaming services on the same day, and are available now for pre-order via Rhino.com.

The music comes in a replica of the original record sleeve issued by Jubilee Records and a booklet featuring photos from the era. The set also includes new liner notes written by jazz arranger and pianist Sy Johnson, who collaborated with Mingus in the 1970s and helped arrange his 1972 album, Let My Children Hear Music.

He writes: "The Mingus Three session was booked for July 9, 1957. Mingus and Hawes brought their histories to the studio: Mingus with a long, powerful record of activism, outrage, and political attack anchored in serious music-making, and Hawes' fanfare of jazz awards and huge success--and he could play!! The date would ultimately become a dialogue between Mingus and Hawes with punctuation from Richmond."

The bonus material provides a fresh glimpse into the principal players and offers alternate – not lesser – versions of album tracks, including swinging takes of “Summertime” and “Hamp’s New Blues.”

Mingus recorded the session in a day with Hawes, a childhood friend who’d been in bands with Charlie Parker and Dexter Gordon, and drummer Dannie Richmond, whose association with the bassist lasted over two decades. Mingus Three included four standards ("Yesterdays," "I Can’t Get Started," "Summertime" and "Laura"), two Mingus originals ("Back Home Blues" and "Dizzy Moods"), and a group jam "Hamp's New Blues."

Mingus’s music continues to reach new audiences through artists like Mingus Big Band (directed by his widow Sue Mingus), Kamasi Washington, Chrissie Hynde (whose latest album includes a Mingus cover), Candace Springs, Elvis Costello, Gang Starr (who samples him), and Joni Mitchell (who wrote lyrics to his music). His musical legacy is still ongoing and will continue to play an essential role in music history for many generations to come.

Get track listing and more information on this Jazz Month Charles Mingus release here.