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BOOK EXCERPTS

Listen to This: Miles Davis and "Bitches Brew"

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The following is an excerpt from the “MUSIC" chapter of Listen to This: Miles Davis and “Bitches Brew" by Victor Svorinich (University Press of Mississippi, 2015). Call It Anything “I'd like to say one thing about Miles Davis. One time he said to me, 'Hey Wayne, do you get tired of playing music that sounds like music?'" --Wayne Shorter “Call It Anything" was one of the working titles used for Bitches Brew. It ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Miles Davis: Kind of Blue

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In any kind of art form, music including, there are pathfinders who probe new territory and establish new trails, and this breed of people is indeed of a rare kind than the many who follow behind and eventually benefit from their trailblazing. One such pathfinder in the 20th century music was the great Miles Davis.Throughout his entire career, Miles was propelled in strange new musical ways which in turn galvanized not only jazz, but contemporary music as well. Unlike some ...

BUILDING A JAZZ LIBRARY

Bulletin Board Members' Picks

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Since we started the Building a Jazz Library (BAJL) series, we've assembled more than sixty collections, and that number continues to grow. We thought it might be interesting to see what readers would recommend, so we asked AAJ Bulletin Board members to provide a short list of recordings they considered essential, and the 159 different lists that came in over a six-month period added up to a tremendously diverse collection of music. The following thirteen recordings (listed ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Miles Davis: Olympia – Mar 20, 1960

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A Totally Subjective History of Jazz, 1945--1968 I am going to over-simplify the history of small-ensemble jazz between the heyday of bebop and the vestibule of fusion using a single catalyst--Miles Davis. Davis was instrumental in or the genesis of five major movements (not including fusion) in jazz where the hinges of these movements can be assigned (however arbitrarily) to specific recordings: Bebop--Davis records “Billie's Bounce" with Charlie Parker for Savoy November 26, 1945. This ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

All of You: The Last Tour 1960

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The problem with Miles Davis' 1960 European Tours has been one of programming. First to know is that Davis toured Europe twice in 1960: the first time with John Coltrane, March 21st to April 109th, and then with Sonny Stitt from September 27th to October 13th. The second thing to know is not every performance of the tours was recorded. What “complete" means is “all that's available. Like any number of Rolling Stones bootlegged performances, Davis' European recordings have been ...

BOOK EXCERPTS

For the Artists: Critical Writing, Volume 2

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Miles Davis: The Complete On the Corner Sessions Sony-Legacy Music, October 2007 “There is no architecture and no build-up. Just a vivid, uninterrupted succession of colors, rhythms and moods." --Arnold Schoenberg, describing his Five Pieces for Orchestra in a letter to Richard Strauss, 1909, quoted in The Rest is Noise, Alex Ross (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007) The music Miles Davis forged in the first half of the 1970s, his so-called “electric period," is ...

BOOK REVIEWS

Jazz Life: A Journey for Jazz Across America in 1960

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Jazz Life: A Journey for Jazz Across America in 1960 William Claxton and Joachim E. Berendt 552 ISBN: 3836544687 Taschen 2013 A single photograph can say and convene more than a thousand words. Although music itself can't be photographed, only a handful of photographers ever got closer to pulling it off than photographers such as Herman Leonard, William P. Gottlieb or William Claxton, to name but a few, whose photographs have captured ...

MY BLUE NOTE OBSESSION

Miles Davis, Volume 1 and 2 -- Blue Note 1501 and 1502

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Miles Davis didn't record much for Blue Note Records, just three sessions in three years. So it's odd that the very first two CDs in Blue Note's classic 1500 series--the 100 albums from the 1950s that made Blue Note the top label in hard bop--are from Miles Davis. They're not bad records, but they're not essential Miles Davis. This isn't classic muted Miles, or modal Miles, or Miles with orchestra. And, of course, it's many years before classic ...



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