“I say, let my children have music. For God’s sake, rid this society of some of the noise so that those who have ears will be able to use them someplace listening to good music.”

Charles Mingus 

This date marks the birth of Charles Mingus in 1922. He was an African-American bassist, composer and band leader. After moving to New York in 1951, he gigged with the jazz giants of the day, including Duke Ellington and Charlie Parker, as well as such young upstarts as Miles Davis and Max Roach. With the latter, Mingus formed his own record company called Debut in 1952, and later co-founded the Jazz Composers’ Workshop, which evolved into Mingus’ musical think tank, the Jazz Workshop. The contradictory volatile-erratic, sensitive-ecstatic Mingus was a phenomenal composer and recording artist.

The Akosua Report: Facts on The African Diaspora, is written by Akosua Lowery. Follow her on Twitter @AkosuaLowery.

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