Monday, November 24, 2014

Miles on Monday: The Sound of Miles Davis

For this week's "Miles on Monday," we reach back all the way to April, 1959 for some truly historic footage of the Miles Davis Quintet (with John Coltrane, Wynton Kelly, Paul Chambers and Jimmy Cobb) augmented by an big band arranged by Gil Evans performing for a TV special called The Sound of Miles Davis.

Recorded the same year Davis released Kind of Blue, this is some of the only footage of the core group of musicians (less Bill Evans and Cannonball Adderley) featured on that landmark album. As such, it's the sort of thing that really should be seen by pretty much anyone claiming to be a Miles Davis fan. The four tunes in the half-hour special are "So What," "The Duke," "Blues for Pablo," and "New Rhumba."

Musicians in addition to Davis and the quintet are Ernie Royal, Clyde Reasinger, Louis Mucci, Johnny Coles, and Emmett Berry (trumpets); Frank Rehak, Jimmy Cleveland, Bill Elton, and Rod Levitt (trombones); Julius Watkins and Bob Northern (French horns); Bill Barber (tuba); Danny Bank (bass clarinet); and Romeo Penque and Eddie Caine (woodwinds).

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