The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

The Art of Jazz #101

The Clown
(Charles Mingus)
(Atlantic Records; 1957)

1 comment :

Chris Rywalt said...

Excellent album, too. I have the lovely Rhino deluxe reissue, which reproduces the album sleeve, front and back, in CD size. The CD is printed to look like the LP sticker (including "UNBREAKABLE"). Nat Hentoff wrote a new essay (dated 1998) for the beautiful booklet.

Mingus is one of those very few composers whose genius just blasts out through every line. Not everything I've heard from him is my favorite, but I can't doubt how damned talented he is even when I'm not thrilled with the piece. But "Haitian Fight Song" from this CD is a must-listen, desert-island track.