Wayne Escoffery – Tenor Sax
Abraham Burton – Alto Sax
Alex Sipiagin – Trumpet
Ku-umba Frank Lacy – Trombone and Vocals
Theo Hill – Piano
Boris Kozlov – Bass
Adam Cruz – Drums
The nimble and expert seven-piece Mingus Dynasty was the first band Sue Mingus organized after Charles Mingus’s death in 1979. Although big bands like the Glenn Miller and Tommy Dorsey bands had continued to perform after their leader passed on, a similar legacy never existed for smaller ensembles. Because Mingus always said he was first and foremost a composer, and because he left behind over three hundred compositions that deserved to be played, a band carrying on his music became a natural, if unanticipated, mission. For the sake of authenticity, the first Dynasty bands were expected to include only musicians who had actually performed with Mingus—except for the bass player of course. Today, thirty-eight years later, the rich legacy of Mingus music ignites the bandstand while new generations of musicians—many of them not even yet alive during the composer’s lifetime―add their individual voices and continue to interpret and build on his compositions.
An astonishingly telepathic ensemble
—New York Daily News
Listening to a brilliant septet, one was struck by how well Mingus’s ensemble arrangements are now played, far more precisely than when he was alive. His original soloists were superb but it has taken 50 loving years for section players to reel off his complex orchestral visions.
—Evening Standard (London)