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The Black Saint And The Sinner Lady

Charles Mingus

1963

The Black Saint And The Sinner Lady

Album Summary

The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady is a studio album by American jazz double bassist, composer, and bandleader Charles Mingus. It was recorded on January 20, 1963, and released in July of that year by Impulse! Records. The album consists of a single continuous composition—partially written as a ballet—divided into four tracks and six movements.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.35

Votes

5880

Genres

  • Jazz
Reviews
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Tue Aug 17 2021
1

Mingus? Dingus more like. This made my day worse.

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Thu Oct 08 2020
5

I can’t claim to know much about jazz at all. Especially not avant-garde, experimental jazz like this. But I loved this album so much. It’s an album where you just give yourself over to the way the music feels. It teases you with a reprise that you think you’re familiar with, then beats you round the head with a horn section for getting too comfortable. It has moments of delicacy and beauty, and of utter stormy cacophonous noise. Putting aside the stories about Mingus (aggressive, violent bugger, essentially) it feels like these people are all playing for their lives. Quite a thing to behold

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Wed Jan 13 2021
4

This touched my thought while my world's affluence crumbled at his feet.

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Wed Apr 07 2021
1

I can't. I feel like there's some 'emperor's new clothes' thing going on with jazz like this. Like, don't they see he's wearing nothing?! I keep waiting for that eureka moment when I might understand it a little, but it has yet to come. The noise almost hurts my brain, it's overbearing, dissonant, disturbing. Maybe that's the point. I don't get it.

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Tue Feb 16 2021
5

A wonderful artistic expression. It takes you away from any thought or emotion and shows you whatever you need to feel within that small musically accompanied moment. It's absolutely incredible

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Fri Jun 11 2021
5

JAZZ!

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Thu Jan 14 2021
5

v nice jazz

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Fri Jan 15 2021
5

This is like as archetypal as experimental jazz gets. Wildly changing time signatures, multiple keys soloing at the same time, crazy studio editing tricks to make it sound even more cacophonous (that flamenco guitar section though). This is one of those records that sounds like it could soundtrack On The Road or something. One of Mingus’ best. Favorite Track: Track-C Group Dancers “(Soul Fusion) Freewoman and Oh, This Freedom's Slave Cries” Least Favorite Track: Track-A Solo Dancers "Stop! Look! And Listen, Sinner Jim Whitney!" (If I had to pick one)

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Fri Jan 15 2021
5

A great expression of free jazz, the emotion and passion that Mingus gets into his albums is almost unrivaled to me.

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Wed Feb 24 2021
5

dirty sexy rollercoaster

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Thu Jan 14 2021
5

Personally, this is a top 3 jazz album OF ALL TIME. It's dark, unsettling, both fitting of the past and the future. Mingus had been no stranger to aggressive or dark music prior, but goddamn this record takes it to a new level. Required listening for any self-proclaimed fan of jazz. Cannot praise enough.

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Tue May 11 2021
5

I really loved this. It had elements of minimalism, with long sustained ostinatos, almost droning. The tempo and meter shifts were surprising. For a jazz album, there weren't as many solos as I would expect, but they were interesting.

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Mon Aug 16 2021
5

For me, this is the absolute pinnacle of Third Stream, and Mingus’s greatest masterwork.

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Tue Aug 24 2021
5

Very cool and very interesting organized chaos. I’m relatively familiar with other works by the angry man of jazz, but I had never actually heard this album before. The mixing and organization behind every piece on the album (especially from a pre-stereo view when the album was made) is incredible and shows that deep thought was given to the somewhat avat garde compositions. Also, the shear amount of different instruments on this album is also impressive-it feels like I’m hearing a different horn or woodwind every second-with the Piano always acting as a sort of anchor. And then a guitar shows up out of nowhere! What the fuck! Side 2 of the record (song 4) is easily the blending off all things good and unique. It’s definitely not for everyone, but if you like big band, jazz, or classical music I’d def give this one a listen.

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Tue Aug 31 2021
5

It's been a while since I binge-listened to most of the Mingus discography. I'd forgotten just how good this masterpiece is. It takes the legacies of blues and swing, distils it into wild avant-garde big band jazz, and triple-filters the liquor through classical, folk dance and Spanish guitar. It's a mind-melting achievement, which sounds incredibly fresh and urgent and unique, even after decades of being a widely celebrated record. I love how the ferocious energy bubbles up into different sounds, then a lid goes on temporarily. The ups and downs give it a narrative structure - not that it tells me a story, but that you feel it taking the shape of a progressing narrative. But honestly, I'm making it sound academic and boring, when it is actually an energising rollercoaster. 5*

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Tue Nov 30 2021
5

So many things come to mind when hearing this album. It sounds like a party gone mad. It sounds like the music is ready to fall apart at any moment but somehow still holds together. It sounds like it could be the soundtrack to some bawdy film noir. Then throughout there's moments of utter peace and beauty. I would say there isn't a jazz album like it but that's too obvious. Is it even a jazz album? There's the problem with labels. It has to be categorized somehow so that it can be placed in the appropriate section in the record bins. Very few jazz albums also feature both a Tuba and a Classical Guitar (that would be bonus points if it already didn't deserve its 5 stars but the music already accomplished that) This review could go on for a while if I went into everything that went through my mind when listening to it instead of just touching on the broad ideas in the first paragraph. It's been a few years since I put this on and I had to listen to it twice and want to put it on yet again. Thank you Mingus!

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Sat Mar 13 2021
4

The perfect balance between melody and noise. 7/10 FT: Track C

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Wed Jan 13 2021
4

Killer album. I love the low end, Bass, Tuba, Bari Sax. Just the wide variety of instruments all coming together for such a beautiful piece.

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Mon Feb 01 2021
4

I like jazz music, but for no good reason, I don't listen to it so frequently. This album is a good remember that I need to listen to it more and more. An excellent album for all days.

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Tue Dec 28 2021
4

I'm an absolutely massive swing-era jazz fan --I love swing dancing-- but as jazz moved away from the swing era to bebop, modal, and other genres I kinda lose interest since it just isn't for me. Nonetheless, I found this album did work for me, even if it's a bit more experimental, although I don't see myself returning to it any time soon. Solid jazz played by solid musicians.

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Tue Jan 19 2021
3

I am not @ good judge of jazz or a jazz man at all. Not like I hated it, but wouldn't listen again

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Thu Jan 21 2021
3

To anyone that says, "I don't like jazz", I'd say, "You aren't listening to the right jazz for you then." Jazz is like a therapist -very personal and you may have to try a lot of it before you find the right jazz for you :) <> People on tv who liked jazz were portrayed as pretentious and the jazz they played in movies for those people was like listening to "Free Bird"'s guitar solo on repeat a bajillion times aka not for me AND THEN, Rachael played me a song or two on a most unforgettable road trip. It was big band music and it was stuff I had heard without knowing it (Thanks, Tom & Jerry). I immediately bought the Ken Burns Jazz 5-cd set and wore it out. <> Mingus looks like Bunk from The Wire - who wouldn't like that? ;-) <> Listening to this album, the 40 min flew by so I'd say I liked it as I search for Ken Burns collection on spotify...

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Sun Feb 28 2021
3

Saved Prior: None Saved Off Rip: None Cutting Edge: None Overall Notes: Yes that was in fact jazz. Don't know enough about jazz to really understand what makes good jazz and what doesn't. Sounded pretty good to me, but also sounded like good ol' jazz.

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Thu Sep 24 2020
5

Usually hit Tijuana Moods or Mingus Ah Um, but damn this record rules.

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Mon Mar 01 2021
5

Fantástico

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Thu Jan 14 2021
5

jazzy

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Wed Jan 13 2021
5

Odlican album, veoma interesantan i osvezavajuci. 9/10

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Tue Feb 02 2021
5

My only other jazz listening experience is with Monk and I gotta say Mingus feels more fluid and easier to engage with thus far. I still put Monk Live in Tokyo at the top of my list but this album is a banger.

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Mon Jun 14 2021
5

Fantastic album, very fresh

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Thu Jun 24 2021
5

A 5. An unqualified masterpiece. It's just so damn good.

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Sun Feb 07 2021
5

This was a great jazz album, and I'm definitely going to look into more albums by Mingus (note to self: Wikipedia says "Mingus Ah Um" is his other masterpiece).

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Wed Feb 10 2021
5

right down my ally

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Thu Feb 04 2021
5

What can be said about this album that hasn’t been said already? It’s a perfect album. 5 stars. Just beautiful, lively, haunting, full of emotion. Recorded beautifully.

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Tue Apr 20 2021
5

Wow, I loved listening to this. Interesting to have 2 jazz albums so close together. I greatly prefer this style to Kind of Blue, personally.

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Tue Apr 13 2021
5

superb - already want to listen to this again with a proper sit down

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Thu Feb 25 2021
5

Really good! Listened to while working out. A bop. 5/5

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Mon Jun 07 2021
5

Put it on and listen. Masterpiece.

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Wed Apr 21 2021
5

Mingus: jesucristo.

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Fri Apr 16 2021
5

I enjoyed it

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Sun Jun 06 2021
5

First time listening: 4/4 songs liked Now, this album is a jazz trip for sure. Didn't ideas melding together in its cohesive titles and movements, this one is way more efficient in its use of length despite its only 4 song repertoire. Wouldn't save any songs, but it's definitely worth a listen. No songs saved

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Thu May 06 2021
5

Great Jazz, a great listen

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Mon Jun 28 2021
5

I'm listening to this as the only person in my office on a Friday that is gray and rainy out. This, album is perfect and its impossible to pause or walk away from it once you start it. It's hard to pick a favorite track, but that closing medley is a hell of a tune.

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Tue Aug 03 2021
5

Basically the perfect Jazz album. Technical.

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Mon Sep 13 2021
5

Wild and adventurous.

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Tue Sep 14 2021
5

excellent! but I am biased towards this genre of jazz.

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Tue Sep 14 2021
5

Incredible. What a journey - through a city, through a mind. Not \"listen to it in the background\" music.

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Fri Sep 17 2021
5

Holy shit, two jazz albums in a row! While I liked the Keith Jarrett album I got yesterday, I fucking love Mingus. His songs just pack so much furious energy into every measure. Captivating from beginning to end 5/5

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Thu Sep 30 2021
5

4.5 | Hace muchos años aprendí qué son los Ostinatos en la música gracias a este disco. Solo hay realmente dos discos de Charles Mingus así que supongo que el otro no estará aquí. En mi opinión este es mejor, es su obra mejor lograda, tiene un sentido entero, dirección y un fondo conceptual sólido. El problema puede ser que llega a ser demasiado densa y si no se tiene conocimiento de las notas que acompañan al album puede parecer un monton de música improvisada sin sentido, a pesar de todo creo que incluso cuando no se lee el acompañamiento se puede sentir la calidad de música, la prevalencia obviamente de ese contrabajo y por supuesto la parte que creo es más famosona, cuando todo se vuelve una guitarra española por un instante. Si lo comparamos con Bitches Brew por ejemplo, tenemos un disco que por muchos años le gana a Miles, se siente menos experimental en algunos aspectos, menos "free flow" que el otro, pero muchísimo más denso y con contenido. Entendible a quien no le agrade, en realidad es un disco que exige atención y el tiempo pero que repaga con creces.

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Sun Oct 17 2021
5

Debauched jazz; runs the gamut of emotions while being sonically perfect. Fuckin a.

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Wed Nov 24 2021
5

Got just about everything right. I’ll be coming back to this. 10/10

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Tue Nov 30 2021
5

I had a viscerally negative reaction to this album on first listen. Discord. Chaos. Any time I found myself enjoying it, these intruded. I started writing up a very negative review while listening for a second time, debating whether to give it 1 or 2 stars. At the same time, I started reading up about the background and intentions of the album. About Mingus' life, his anger, his experiences with racism, his illness and death. I found myself appreciating Side 2 (Modes D - F). It still had much of the discord and chaos that was making me uncomfortable, but I could at least appreciate the mastery and composition and the moods it was meant to evoke. I went back to the beginning of the album, closely listening with new ears and started to recognize why this is considered a jazz masterpiece. By the time I returned to Modes D - F, now truly focused on the music, I was blown away. This is a challenging album and clearly isn't background music like so much jazz - it demands attention. It demands struggle. It's worth it and I stand corrected.

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Fri Dec 03 2021
5

This is dope 🎺👌

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Fri Dec 03 2021
5

Loved this record!

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Sun Dec 05 2021
5

magnificent, ambitious and mystical

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Mon Dec 06 2021
5

amazing wow

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Tue Dec 07 2021
5

Stunning

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Wed Dec 08 2021
5

This was a rather dramatic soundtrack to my rather ordinary day. Evocative and cinematic, this album tells a story, going from smoky and sultry to mildly frenetic to romantic to grandly theatrical in a short 39 minutes. Not all jazz does it for me but this sure does. Love it.

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Wed Dec 08 2021
5

This was pretty amazing. Very different from the usual collection of songs. It was absolutely jazz, but it really felt like listening to a classical composition with its length, movements, and unity. I sometimes struggle with recorded musical improvisation (not so when it's a live performance), but I never felt that with this work. A lot of recorded jazz sounds tedious to me, but this never did. I think being presented as a unified work actually made it more listenable as it progressed from movement to movement, repeating melodies here and there, and introducing Spanish guitar when it was ready for it. It's hard to compare this to a pop collection of songs. This felt a little more work to listen to, but it was really good, enjoyable work, and I so appreciated the opportunity to experience it.

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Tue Dec 28 2021
5

Not Mingus's best album, but still an easy five stars.

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Fri Dec 31 2021
5

Stunning. Heavy. The best album recommended to me so far.

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Mon Jan 03 2022
5

Perfect.

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Mon Jan 03 2022
5

Now that's what I call jazz.

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Mon Jan 03 2022
5

versatile, storytelling jazz.

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Mon Jan 03 2022
5

Stunning. Unlike anything I’ve heard before. Completely absorbing. Such depth, such intensity, such reshaping of the world through music. Towering achievement.

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Fri Jan 07 2022
5

Reminded me of ‘Kind of Blue’. Definitely one to revisit.

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Sun Feb 20 2022
5

One of the best albums of Mingus - not much too add, other than this is a great album.

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Fri Feb 25 2022
5

A high point in jazz music

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Sat Feb 26 2022
5

I find jazz a mite tricky to write about, an issue I suspect I share with many. How do you dissect it entertainingly without either splatterings of empty words conveying the square root of sod all or acres of minutiae about unorthodox time signatures and tonal clusters that also convey the square root of sod all? Can you just write "it sounds nice" or "it sounds bad"? Anyway, this sounds nice. By "nice" I mean bold, intricate, formidable and singular. Of course, with such an experimental piece as this, the listener is required to be open-minded, but that also implies that it's rather your fault if you don't get this. I'm happy with that conclusion.

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Thu Mar 03 2022
5

This album is stunning, a jazz masterpiece in everything that made jazz unique in the early 1960s - a single composition that stars almost like a ballet and evolves to become very experimental, with an eleven piece big band working in full synergy to deliver something unique, with a beautiful orchestration. Mingus' piano sounds amazing, and his double bass is also out of this world. There's nothing like The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady.

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Tue Mar 08 2022
5

So energetic and vital, really lifted my spirits. More like this please.

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Tue Mar 15 2022
5

I think this is now one of the best jazz album I've ever heard. The arrangements are incredibly brilliant and ahead of their time. The sounds of each instrument are used in an original and unexpected way. I want this album on vinyl now.

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Tue Mar 15 2022
5

Those orchestrations are miraculous. No one sounds like Mingus and his blend of experimental big band, classical music and the so-called world music. Most importantly, he kept pushing the jazz genre forward while still bopping hard. This album is a testament to his genius.

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Tue Mar 22 2022
5

This is one of my favorite jazz albums. Mingus here is at the top of his game, experimenting and innovating. It is a total ride.

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Tue Mar 29 2022
5

I've never really enjoyed Jazz, but this kept drawing me back with interesting rhythms and sounds and phrases.

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Thu Mar 31 2022
5

slapper of the highest order, first song is madness

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Sun Apr 03 2022
5

As expected, Mingus took me on a journey. Some good places, others pretty dark. The musicianship on display here is amazing in ways I would struggle to express, so I'll take an easy cop-out and just give it five stars.

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Sat Apr 09 2022
5

An absolutely amazing jazz standard. There is so much going on - just melodies weaving in and out of each other. Absolute classic

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Thu Apr 14 2022
5

Beautiful!

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Thu May 12 2022
5

Latin music really turns the elevator-ish jazz into an explosive monster. I felt every note in this album. The struggles and build-up of the drums, the wailing of the violins, the Tom and Jerry-ish flow of the wind instruments... All of these sound so chaotic and human. And because of that, every second of this is such an adventure. That's the epitome of a musical experience. This is probably how jazz sounds to jazz fans. Not a boring, lengthy musical fiddling but an experience beyond words. I'm not a big fan of jazz, but I freaking love this bad boy.

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Fri May 27 2022
5

Yes!

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Wed Jun 01 2022
5

The 60's were a wild time to be a part of the jazz scene. Bebop, established in the 40's out of necessity to contrast the big band boys, had grown into hard bop in the 50's with an influence of blues melodies. Then the 60's came around and we can see the need to break down the walls of conventional jazz rules, a way to start reinventing the genre; Charles Mingus has always been at the forefront of this. Mingus plays by his own definitions of jazz along with Ornette Coleman (not featured on this list) to bring a new experience to listeners. The Black Saint And The Sinner Lady is a crowning achievement of Mingus and Avant-garde jazz as a whole. It's theatrical, progressive, and beautiful all in one package. Truth be told, this is an album that should be wholly experienced, with art and liner notes. Additional, this is a successful blend of jazz and classical that is never boring or excessive. I don't know how else to talk about it other than encouraging you to really listen, with more than just your ears, and visualize this album to the best of your ability.

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Thu Jun 09 2022
5

I feel supremely unqualified to comment on any jazz album's quality relative to another's, but I will say that out of all the jazz I've listened to for this project (including Bitches Brew and Kind of Blue, among others), this is by far the most interesting. It's innovative in all the right ways and it sounds like more than just a music theory exercise. Plus they included a contrabass trombone! Who the hell does that? An unexpected joy. Best track: Track C - Group Dancers [(Soul Fusion) Freewoman and Oh, This Freedom's Slave Cries]

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Tue Jun 21 2022
5

I think this is awesome music and should be required listening. I don't know how Mingus was able to pull off the combination of styles with a free jazz vibe, but he did. At times it sounds like a soundtrack, at times an avant-garde troupe playing live. A magnificent suite.

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Wed Jun 22 2022
5

Just the best jazz album ever

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Mon Jun 27 2022
5

Great morning album especially the 18minute ending tune

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Fri Jul 01 2022
5

Reminded me why I love good jazz.

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Sat Jul 23 2022
5

Mingus is one of the greatest bandleaders in jazz. This album is a multi part song cycle that borrows from jazz, classical, Latin, and African music. It is at times more accessible and more abstract at others. Structured loosely as a ballet, this album remineded me somewhat of Stravinsky's Rite of Spring. This is one of those pieces of music that transcends genre and will stand as a work of genius.

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Tue Aug 02 2022
5

Un classique. Comment combiner des arrangements hyper riches avec des trippes et un jeu super organique. On joue avec les dynamiques, les tempos et tout ce qui est possible. L’album ne sert pas à mettre en valeur la contrebasse, mais la musique. Superbe !

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Mon Aug 08 2022
5

jazzao muito massa aham

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Wed Aug 17 2022
5

Beautifully chaotic. Went straight out and found another album of his to listen to.

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Tue Aug 23 2022
5

Really great

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Fri Sep 02 2022
5

Jazz is not my favorite. But I can recognize and appreciate the talent it took to make this album.

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Fri Sep 02 2022
5

I like the part where it goes doot doot

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Fri Sep 16 2022
5

So good, how have I not come across this album before now? I like jazz but don't listen to it regularly, electro wins out generally for me. Still have listened to Mingus before. Never heard Mingus like this though. Gorgeous. One for the repeat list, makes me wish I had it on vinyl (and a vinyl player, AND room for one!).

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Fri Sep 16 2022
5

A great classic!

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Tue Sep 27 2022
5

Changed my life

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Tue Oct 18 2022
5

Never heard this before - amazing! Recorded in one day! Only 11 people - sounds like many more!

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Mon Oct 24 2022
5

One of the best albums of all time

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Tue Dec 13 2022
5

i don't have to say anything about this album. jesus christ what a masterpiece. i give a lot of albums 5s, because i fucking love music, but this is a 6. it's a 10. it's a 100. goddamn.

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Thu Dec 15 2022
5

Greazy, dark, tight, filthy jazz. Full disclosure here: I fucking hate jazz. I hate the tootling, self aggrandizing bullshit. but I. love. Charles Mingus. It's gutteral, dirty, almost scatalogical. Whereas jazz is so often cerebral, long winded, unstructured and lame - this feels rhythmic, deep, penetrative, and primeval. Brilliant

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