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A Modern Jazz Symposium of Music and Poetry

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Released  1957
Length  57:29
A Modern Jazz Symposium of Music and Poetry (1957)  Weary Blues (1958)
Release date  1957
Genre  Jazz
Recorded  October 1957
Producer  Jeff Palo
Artist  Charles Mingus
Label  Bethlehem Records
A Modern Jazz Symposium of Music and Poetry httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediaenthumbf
Similar  Charles Mingus albums, Jazz albums

A Modern Jazz Symposium of Music and Poetry is an album by jazz bassist Charles Mingus. In spite of the title, the album does not contain any poetry. "Scenes in the City", however, includes narration performed by Mel Stewart and written by actor Lonne Elder with assistance from Langston Hughes. The composition "Duke's Choice" re-appears, in updated form, as "I X Love" on the 1963 album Mingus Mingus Mingus Mingus Mingus. "Nouroog", "Duke's Choice" and "Slippers" form the basis of the suite "Open Letter to Duke" on Mingus Ah Um.


The CD issues of the album include three bonus tracks: the Dizzy Gillespie standard "Woody 'n' You", Charlie Parker's "Billie's Bounce", which is listed as "Bounce" and miscredited to Mingus, and an alternate take of "Slippers".


The Allmusic review by Scott Yanow called it "An excellent set of challenging yet often accessible music". The Penguin Guide to Jazz gives the album a three-star review (of a possible four stars), and describes it as "an opportunity for Mingus to experiment with texts and with pure sound". The Penguin editors furthermore cite Clarence Shaw's performance on "New York Sketchbook" as "the best trumpet heard on a Mingus album for some time before or since".

Track listing

All titles by Charles Mingus, except where noted.

  1. "Scenes in the City" (Music: Mingus; Narrative: Elder, Hughes) – 11:55
  2. "Nouroog" – 4:52
  3. "New York Sketchbook" – 8:55
  4. "Duke's Choice" – 6:27
  5. "Slippers" – 3:29
  6. "Woody 'n' You" (Gillespie) – 8:44
  7. Mistitled "Wouldn't You" on earlier releases
  8. "Bounce" (Parker) – 9:22
  9. "Slippers (Alternate Take)" – 3:50


  • Charles Mingus – bass
  • Jimmy Knepper – trombone
  • Shafi Hadi – tenor and alto saxophone
  • Bill Hardman – trumpet (on "Nouroog")
  • Clarence Shaw – trumpet (except on "Nouroog")
  • Dannie Richmond – drums
  • Horace Parlan – piano (on "Nouroog", "Duke's Choice", "Slippers"; left hand during final solo on "New York Sketchbook")
  • Bob Hammer – piano (on remaining tracks)
  • Mel Stewart – voice (narration on "Scenes in the City")
  • Songs

    1Scenes in the City11:38
    3New York Sketchbook8:43


    A Modern Jazz Symposium of Music and Poetry Wikipedia

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