145

George Coleman, Mike Stern, Ron Carter, and Jimmy Cobb: 4 Generations of Miles

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
George Coleman, Mike Stern, Ron Carter, and Jimmy Cobb: 4 Generations of Miles
In terms of star power, this record's got no shortage. Every player in this quartet is a great musician—not just good, but great. That and the fact that 4 Generations of Miles was recorded live should make it exciting just to open the case. Unfortunately, that excitement dissipates not long after you press play. The group is airtight, and each player plays articulately and lyrically, but in the end it just doesn't add up to much more than you've already heard. It seems that Miles Davis tributes pop up at an alarming rate these days... but for them to really work, they need to go beyond the Dark Prince. The trick is rising "above" the music and capturing its spirit within a new context of vision and invention. To name one example, the World Saxophone Quartet's '98 record Selim Sivad did exactly that.

For diehards, this record spans a nice range of styles and moods, mostly representing the late '50s/early '60s vintage (though "81" offers a bit of a backbeat for contrast). Titles like "Blue in Green" and "Freddie Freeloader" offer strong hints. It's certainly interesting to hear old-timers like Jimmy Cobb, Ron Carter, and George Coleman jam with fusion star Mike Stern (two decades their junior). Stern tucks in the edges, and he leaves absolutely zero doubt that he can travel straight-ahead with the best of them. He's by far the most interesting player on this disc, toying with convention when he's not hanging low comping harmony or playing heads. His solos dwell in the modal/scalar realm for the most part, though they scatter here and there. Stern blows with incredible energy on "Freddie Freeloader," ripping through changes and tossing in some nice blues licks along the way. That's the high point of 4 Generations of Miles by a long shot.

In the end, though, it's mostly rehash, so dig in only if you want to hear four veteran players enter the shrine. Take it or leave it—I recommend the latter.

Track Listing

There is No Greater Love; All Blues; On Green Dolphin Street; Blue In Green; 81; Freddie Freeloader; My Funny Valentine; If I Were a Bell; Oleo.

Personnel

George Coleman- tenor saxophone; Mike Stern- guitar; Ron Carter- bass; Jimmy Cobb- drums.

Album information

Title: 4 Generations Of Miles | Year Released: 2002 | Record Label: Chesky Records

Tags

Shop Amazon

More

Read Love Letter
Love Letter
Jimmy Heath
Read No Base Trio
No Base Trio
Jonathan Suazo / Gabriel Vicens / Leonardo Osuna
Read A Tribute to Alvin Fielder - Live at Vision Festival XXIV
A Tribute to Alvin Fielder - Live at Vision Festival XXIV
Edward 'Kidd' Jordan, Joel Futterman, William Parker, Hamid Drake

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.