Saturday, July 2, 2011

Plays Charles Mingus, 1980

Dannie Richmond was Charles Mingus' longest-running band member. He was probably Mingus' best friend and owed a lot to Mingus. In Brian Priestley's biography, Mingus, Dannie Richmond is quoted as saying: "Some people said that Charles taught me how to play, which in a sense is true...I, for example, did not know anything really about dynamics. My playing then was very flashy, and I wanted to be very fast. You know, a young boy showing off. It was only after Charles saw this that he was able to say, 'No, at this point you have to whisper, and there have to be other points where there's planned chaos!' There were many other lessons, of course, that I learned. Not only from the musical standpoint but about living, and doing certain things certain ways. and, of course, he would also make a point to drop some of his philosophical things on me."
This is a wonderful tribute to one of the major figures in the history of Jazz.



  1. Hello,
    I am working on a jazz documentary focus on the life of Charles Mingus, directed by his grandson Kevin Ellington Mingus and I would like to contact you by email. Could you send it to me?
    Thank you,
    Valeria Rios

  2. I've often found jazz drummers who first learnt (or kept going) another instrument are amongst the best - Aldo Romano being another - they don't just play time, or just show off, they are musical.

    Dannie is certainly no exception.

    I don't mind if he was cashing in (and hope he did cash in a bit) with this tribute - it will have been heartfelt, and is well worthy.

    Thanks for the Up!