Saturday, May 25, 2013

StLJN Saturday Video Showcase:
Happy birthday, Miles Davis!

Tomorrow will be the 87th anniversary of the birth of Miles Davis, the most famous and historically significant jazz musician to come from the St. Louis area and one of our favorite subjects over the years here at StLJN. As in the past couple of years, on the Saturday closest to his birthday, we've assembled a video tribute, which this year features six extended-length performances showcasing four of the legendary trumpeter's bands during his electric period.

The first video up above was shot in 1969 in Copenhagen, and shows Davis with the group sometimes referred to as the "Lost Quintet," because they weren't documented on any of his studio albums at the time. That would be Wayne Shorter on saxophones, Chick Corea on keys, Dave Holland on bass and Jack DeJohnette on drums, seen here playing a mix of older and then-new material that included "Bitches Brew," "Agitation," "I Fall In Love Too Easily," "Sanctuary," "It's About That Time" and "The Theme."

Down below, there are two shows recorded during Davis' 1971 European tour, with Gary Bartz (saxophones), Keith Jarrett (keyboards), Michael Henderson (bass), Leon "Ndugu" Chandler (drums), Don Alias (percussion) and James "Mtume" Forman (percussion). The first is from November 6, 1971 in Berlin, and the second was recorded three nights later on November 9 in Oslo, Norway.

The fourth set was made in 1973 in Stockholm by a band including Davis, now playing organ as well as trumpet, plus Henderson, Mtume, David Liebman (saxophones, flute), Pete Cosey (guitar, percussion), Reggie Lucas (guitar) and Al Foster (drums).

The final two videos are from 1982, and feature Davis with an ensemble including Bill "Not the Legendary Pianist" Evans on saxophones and flute, Mike Stern on guitar, Marcus Miller on bass, Foster on drums and Mino Cinelu on percussion. The set occupying the fifth slot is from April 1982 at the Hammersmith Odeon in London, and the last video is from May 8, 1982 in Brussels, Belgium.

To see more of StLJN's extensive past coverage of Miles Davis, click here.

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