Charles Mingus: Composer, Iconoclast, Native Son.

As a bassist, Mingus is the logical extension of another Ellington alumnus, Jimmy Blanton. Mingus had a huge sound and the ability to coax a vast array of colors out of the big fiddle. He bass lines generated a fierce sense of swing that pushed the ensemble right to the edge of coming unglued. Check out Boogie Stop Shuffle or Haitian Fight Song for proof. In these compositions, the bass is not a supporting player, but the boss.