Music News 11/19/2020


Charles Mingus, AT BREMEN 1964 & 1975 (Sunnyside, 4 CDs, $35.98) – This is an exciting addition to the documentation of two of bassist/composer/bandleader Charles Mingus’s greatest ensembles. The powerhouse 1964 group includes Eric Dolphy (alto, flute, bass clarinet), Johnny Coles (trumpet), Clifford Jordan (tenor), Jaki Byard (piano), and Danny Richmond (drums).  

The 1975 group is George Adams (tenor), Jack Walrath (trumpet), Don Pullen (piano), and Mr. Richmond again, Mingus’s longtime drummer. The selections include Mingus classics such as “Fables of Faubus” and “Meditations on Integration” (this is 1964!), “Duke Ellington’s Sound of Love,” “Remember Rockefeller at Attica,” “Parkeriana,” and “Sue’s Changes.” Over four hours of fantastic music, with superb sound. 

Susan Alcorn, PEDERNAL (Relative Pitch, $13.98) – The adventurous pedal-steel player, collaborating with Mary Halvorson, guitar; Mark Feldman, violin; Michael Formanek, bass; Ryan Sawyer, drums. 

Listen to Kevin Whitehead’s review on NPR’s Fresh Air


Jennifer Koh, BACH & BEYOND PART 3 (Cedille, 2 CDs, $16.99) – In the third volume of her juxtapositions of Bach’s Sonatas and Partitas for Violin with modern works, Jennifer Koh showcases Bach’s Sonatas Nos. 2 and 3 with Luciano Berio’s Sequenza VIII for solo violin and John Harbison’s For Violin Alone (a world premiere recording).  NOTE:  You can watch Jennifer Koh tonight (Thursday, Nov. 19) perform in a virtual concert through the Library of Congress Concert Series. 

Tabea Zimmermann, SOLO II: Plays Bach & Kurtág (Myrios, $19.99) – Another world-class player, Tabea Zimmermann, plays arrangements of Bach’s Cello Suites Nos. 3 and 4 on the viola, as well as six pieces (of the 23) from Signs, Games and Messages (for viola) by György Kurtág. 


Since 1993, Putumayo World Music has created compilation albums that have introduced all kinds of international and regional music to audiences.  Their latest two albums are CELTIC WOMEN and NEW ORLEANS MAMBO. Putumayo has also released fine holiday albums over the years, including  FRENCH CHRISTMAS,  NEW ORLEANS CHRISTMAS,  BLUES CHRISTMAS, and  JEWISH CELEBRATION (All Putumayo releases are $14.98) NOTE: Putumayo is offering a free 11-song sampler called WORLD PEACE with artists like Nina Simone, Keb’ Mo’, Mira Awad, and collaborations uniting David Broza & Wyclef Jean, Richard Bona & Michael Brecker. 

FREE with the purchase of any Putumayo album (until supplies last).