SWAN | A Genre Marginalized

The Mingus Big Band is one of several ensembles formed after the death of jazz titan Charles Mingus that dedicates itself to performing and interpreting the canon of the late composer’s music. Since 2008, the band has held a residency at mid-Manhattan’s Jazz Standard club, performing two sets of music every Monday night. The Mingus Big Band has been recording their iterations of Mingus’ music for nearly thirty years, and their album Live at Jazz Standard (2010) earned the group a Grammy award. During spring break, I was fortunate enough to see the group play one of their sets. On this specific night, the band performed “Haitian Fight Song,” one of Mingus’ more significant and revered compositions that appeared on his 1957 album The Clown.