Thursday, April 26, 2007
This recording has never gotten much hype; perhaps due to the stress that occurred between the players at the time of its inception. Supposedly, Mingus left in the middle of the session as a result of his frustration. Despite his past work with Ellington and his reverance for the man, it was probably still difficult to exist in the shadow of this great jazz musician/composer. The tension that existed can be felt and imagined by listening to his performance on the opening title track Money Jungle.
Duke Ellington entered the studio for this recording nine days prior to his well-received collaboration with John Coltrane. It was also at this time that he recorded an album with Coleman Hawkins, so he was primed and ready to roll with whatever musical punches his comrades had to throw at him. This short album contains some of Ellington's punchiest piano playing caught on tape and fans of any of these musicians will marvel at the result of this brief partnership.