Saturday, July 25, 2015
ACBA: Jazz At Massey Hall by Arnaud Maggs
Jazz At Massey Hall: Volume One
New York City, USA: Debut Records, 1953
10" vinyl LP
Edition size unknown
Recorded live at Massey Hall in Toronto, on the 15th of May, 1953, this forty-seven-minute LP marks the only time that Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker (credited as Charlie Chan for contractual reasons), Bud Powell, Charles Mingus, and Max Roach recorded together as a unit. It was also the last recording of Parker and Gillespie together.
Mingus, who co-owned Debut records, reportedly later overdubbed his bass lines to make his sound more prominent.
The cover graphic is by artist Arnaud Maggs, who worked as a successful designer until 1973, when - at the age of 47 - he gave it up to focus on his work as a visual artist.
“It was exciting to meet Mingus at his home and listen to the tapes with him. I created the cover on the subway ride back to my studio at 58 Park Avenue. Little did anyone know how famous this recording was to become” he later told Canadian Art magazine.