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4.8 out of 5 stars17
4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 20 July 2006
This is a very strong and powerful album, Mingus intended it to be a musical description of his turbulent stay in Mexico and it succeeds grandly in evoking the atmosphere. Here Mingus employs trombone, trumpet and alto sax along with the rhythm section. It's a very effective blend with the trombone rumbling along with the bass; drums and piano pushing everything along; and trumpet and alto floating though it all.

Dizzy Moods is meant to represent the drive to Mexico and all its expectations. Being a variation on Dizzy Gillespie's Woody n You it is good preparation for the wildness to follow with its mixture of the familiar and unfamiliar; blues with a twist. Ysabel's Table Dance is a tour de force, the spagetti western meets modern jazz, each instrument has its own distinctive story to tell. Tijuana gift shop serves as a nice interlude before the albums other stone classic, Los Mariachis (the street musicians). Again this is not merely a set of themes and solos, but a story being told with incredible depth and richness. A sweet n sour rendition of Flamingo closes out the original set.

When this album was eventually released in 1962, five years after it had been recorded, Mingus said it was the best record he ever made. I'm very tempted to agree. As for the extra tracks: A Colloquial Dream is interesting but nonessential. The second disc, which is what the album sounded like before edits is a facinating listen, though I think Mingus got the cuts right first time around.

This record is recommended to anyone with a passing interest in Mingus' world, if you've heard Mingus Ah Um and want something more raucous this should be your next stop.
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on 5 November 2010
It's often the case that a cd title will oversell it's content.But "Tijuana Moods + bonus tracks" undersells this one spectacularly.What you get here is,squeezed onto one cd,the "Tijuana Moods" lp as it was issued originally(recorded summer 1957 but not issued till 1962)plus the complete "Modern Jazz Symposium of Music and Poetry",a lesser known album recorded a few months after "Moods" with New York rather than Tijuana as the connecting theme.A common thread in the two albums is the presence of the forgotten but brilliant trumpeter Clarence Shaw who, along with regulars at the time Hadi,Knepper and Richmond, made some of the most beautiful and exciting music to come out of that period,way ahead of it's time.This set serves as a perfect introduction to Mingus during the period before the more generally celebrated "Ah-Um" that was recorded two years later.(And if you like Clarence Shaw,then get "East Coasting" which was recorded in between "Moods" and "Symposium" and has the great Bill Evans on piano.)
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 18 March 2015
This Charles Mingus album, recorded in 1957 although not released until 1962, was inspired by the man’s visit to the titular Mexican town and the music is redolent of 'latin influence’ both in name and sound. Of course, Mingus was one of the most expansive and progressive composers ever in jazz and here the man’s development process towards extensive, almost classical, ensemble pieces is in evidence particularly on the extended numbers, Ysabel’s Table Dance and Los Mariachis, in effect tracing a path between the previous year’s ground-breaking ‘orchestral piece’, Pithecanthropus Erectus, and the later (and, arguably, Mingus’ career highpoint) 11-piece, seamless single composition that was The Black Saint And The Sinner Lady.

In fact, (newly turned) drummer Dannie Richmond was the only member of Tijuana Moods’ sextet that Mingus would take forward to Black Saint, but the sextet’s playing here (at times) seems to simulate a much larger ensemble with its improvisational, almost organic, playing. Mingus particularly championed trumpeter Clarence Eugene Shaw’s playing here and it is particularly sublime on the only non-Mingus composition, the Ellington-staple (sounding rather 'Blue In Green-like’) Flamingo. Indeed, Shaw excels again on opener Dizzy Moods and again, in ensemble mode with Shafi Hadi’s tenor sax and Jimmy Knepper’s trombone on the perfectly formed Tijuana Gift Shop. But, it is really on the two aforementioned extended numbers where Mingus’ group push the boundaries of rhythm and group dynamics – it is also possible to detect hints of Gil Evans-like arrangement here (who was to arrange Miles Ahead in the same year).

The 2010 expanded 2-CD release also contains numerous alternative takes of the album’s five tunes, plus the added 11-minute Mingus composition, A Colloquial Dream, a highly inspirational theatrical piece ‘narrated’ by Lonnie Elder (which namedrops Monk, Bird and Miles).
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 5 April 2011
To drown his sorrows after his marriage with Celia broke up, Charles Mingus and his drummer Dannie Richmond went on a road trip to Mexico. This inspired the wonderful album 'Tijuana Moods' which was recorded in 1957 but, inexplicably, not released until 1962. The passionate and atmospheric music paints a vivid aural picture of Mingus's trip with tremendous performances from the obscure trumpeter Clarence Shaw, altoist Shafi Hadi, pianist Bill Triglia and trombonist Jimmy Knepper.
Highlight is undoubtedly the lengthy and frenetic 'Ysabel's Table Dance' which features dramatic castanets from flamenco dancer, Ysabel Morel.
This edition of 'Tijuana Moods' includes the original album plus a CD of alternative takes and is an essential part of any Mingus collection.
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on 6 September 2010
I'm writing about the 2 cd edition (and god knows where else will amazon put my comments)...
Is this the best Mingus album? I can understand those who would say so, although I'm not that sure. Also, it's (still) not my favorite Mingus... But it's MAGNIFICENT, no doubt about it.
As usual, orchestra with only three horns sounds almost like a full fledged big band, with richness of textures and sounds only Mingus can orchestrate...
Naturally, having Dannie Richmond on drums helps quite a bit and he did add occasional vocal by himself or Ysabel Morel, and the castanets of Frankie Dunlop (not very common in jazz masterpieces, no doubt about that)....
Mingus fans know everything about the magnificent Jimmy Knepper (the trombone that shakes you to the bone), Shafi Hadi is also excellent on saxes, but fiercly passionate Clarence Shaw IS the true revellation of this album...

CD 2 with various alternate takes (if you have that edition) is of some interest, but it is not really necessary - CD 1 is brilliant enough. So, if you dwell on spending little less money on a cheaper edition, without extra tracks on CD 2, I recommend you go with it. You don't need anything extra with such richness of music.
His royal Mingusness has done it again...

And, yes, this has Mexican ellements, but it's no world music, pop music, mexican music or anything else but pure jazz, bursting with emotion, various influences and originality at the same time.
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on 1 April 2015
Great to have this after someone nicked my record version in 1966. Its also good to have the alternative takes. Wild music brilliantly evocative of a wild experience. Not to everyone's taste in its anarchic structure but if you can hear the music its really superb.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 7 April 2011
To drown his sorrows after his marriage with Celia broke up, Charles Mingus and his drummer Dannie Richmond went on a road trip to Mexico. This inspired the wonderful album 'Tijuana Moods' which was recorded in 1957 but, inexplicably, not released until 1962. The passionate and atmospheric music paints a vivid aural picture of Mingus's trip with tremendous performances from the obscure trumpeter Clarence Shaw, altoist Shafi Hadi, pianist Bill Triglia and trombonist Jimmy Knepper.
Highlight is undoubtedly the lengthy and frenetic 'Ysabel's Table Dance' which features dramatic castanets from flamenco dancer, Ysabel Morel.
This edition of 'Tijuana Moods' includes the original album plus a CD of alternative takes and is an essential part of any Mingus collection.
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I have the original CD release (1996; Bluebird) that contains the material on CD1 of this double CD release. I have many (not all) of Mingus' albums and this is one of the top five (but all have considerable individual merit).
This was recorded relatively early in his career and is one of the earliest to include Dannie Richmond (d) who must be on virtually every subsequent album. There are several musicians who are associated with Mingus e.g. Jimmy Knepper (tmb), Shafi Hadi (alto). It also features the brilliant, enigmatic Clarence (a.k.a. Gene) Shaw (tpt) who "vanished" having had a fight (literally) with Mingus. (He resurfaced briefly a few years later and recorded a couple of albums before vanishing again).

This album features five "tuneable" instruments plus drums, percussion and castanets!

The music followed a brief holiday by Mingus and Richmond in Mexico. Recorded in 1957, it wasn't released until 1962.

Needless to say the whole album is "Latinised", but is typical Mingus in tone, tune, vigour and harmony. It is violent at times and utterly serene at others. It paints a wonderful picture in sound, evoking feelings, colours, even flavours of a visit to some seedier districts of Tijuana.

Describing the five tunes in detail would serve little purpose. Each is a sound-scape. Every one of the main six musicians features and makes unique and valuable contributions. It would be invidious to single any one out, except that this is one of very few recordings featuring Clarence Shaw...or Shafi Hadi for that matter.

P.S. Mingus couldn't abide being called Charlie!
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on 8 June 2015
Bought as gift.

Firstly from a purely objective viewpoint product came in good time and was well packaged and manufactured. Exactly meeting expectations for a CD.

The final recipient loves the album and having listened to it my self found the experience thoroughly enjoyable. Really Interesting Album.
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on 24 June 2016
So. One of his best , that's saying something I cannot go a week without listening to this music
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