Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help
315

Miles Davis: Cookin'

Douglas Payne By

Sign in to view read count Views
During the early 1950s, trumpeter Miles Davis (1926-91) recorded for both Prestige and Blue Note, the most distinctive independent labels in jazz at the time. Davis himself was developing and perfecting a style that was beginning to gain notice, popularity and substantial influence. By 1955, he had formed such an exemplary quintet of musicians, it came to be known as the quintet. Featuring the bursting torrents of John Coltrane, which perfectly balanced the spare romanticism of Davis's trumpet, the quintet was rooted in the guileless precision of Red Garland's piano, the musical dexterity of Paul Chamber's bass and the hard swing of Philly Joe Jones's drums. Each complimented the other in uncountable and still fascinating ways. A stunning performance at the Newport Jazz Festival that year led to a contract with Columbia Records. But Davis closed out his relationship with Prestige by laying down two spontaneous marathon sessions with this marvelous quintet during May and October 1956. The sessions yielded four classics in the Davis discography: Relaxin' , Workin' , Steamin' and this record, Cookin '. All four titles accurately describe the overall mood throughout. Davis thrived under such spontaneity and this disc, in particular, marks the emergence of a most distinctive personality - for band and leader alike. The three performances and one medley performed here come from the last of the two sessions and feature numbers Davis had recorded before ("Tune Up," "Airegin"). But it is here where David premiered his definitive take on the ballad, "My Funny Valentine." It is one of his grandest, most passionate-ever performances (on muted trumpet) and while Trane lays out, the song ascends on the fragile loveliness Garland brings to it. Davis's snappy "Blues By Five" and the particularly aggressive "Airegin" show the band in full-force communiqué. The after hours medley "Tune-Up/When Lights Are Low" is appropriate and well done, but less stunning than what's preceded it. Cookin'

| Record Label: Prestige Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Book Reviews
Hi-Res Jazz
CD/LP/Track Review
Multiple Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
DVD/Film Reviews
Read more articles
Miles Davis
Miles Davis
Deagostini
2016
buy
Miles Smiles
Miles Smiles
Music On Vinyl
2016
buy
Everything's Beautiful
Everything's Beautiful
RCA Legacy; Columbia/Legacy
2016
buy
Miles Davis at Newport 1955-1975: The Bootleg Series Vol. 4
Miles Davis at...
Sony-Legacy Music
2015
buy
Kind of Blue
Kind of Blue
Music On Vinyl
2015
buy
Olympia – Mar 20, 1960
Olympia – Mar 20,...
LaserLight
2015
buy
Pat Metheny Pat Metheny
guitar
John Coltrane John Coltrane
saxophone
Chet Baker Chet Baker
trumpet
Chick Corea Chick Corea
piano
Weather Report Weather Report
band/orchestra
Kenny Dorham Kenny Dorham
trumpet

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.