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From a live 1958 session at the Persian Room of New York’s swanky Plaza Hotel, this reissue reminds us that Miles Davis’ sextet was one of the greatest in jazz. Originally issued in 1973, the LP contained liner note errors regarding time and place of performance as well as one incorrect song title and one incorrect personnel listing. Those errors have been corrected. The CD repackaging includes both the original liner notes and updated comments from Bob Blumenthal.
Bill Evans, Cannonball Adderley and John Coltrane provided impressive solo work at the session. Davis led his ensemble through some of the best improvisation jazz has ever seen. It makes you wonder. Which band was better: the earlier Miles Davis Quintet or his sextet? Which year do we hold most dear: 1957 or 1958?
”My Funny Valentine” slows the tempo some and makes room for sensitive soloing, particularly from Evans. Davis improvises a muted solo that had to come from his gut. Quite unlike Chet Baker, Davis would exude from-the-soul emotion and deliver a fresh interpretation every time. The songs average ten minutes, allowing plenty of solo time from this all-star edition of the Miles Davis Sextet. Every reminiscing trip through the Davis archives is a pleasant one.
Track Listing: If I Were a Bell; Oleo; My Funny Valentine; Straight, No Chaser.
Personnel: Miles Davis- trumpet; Cannonball Adderley- alto saxophone; John Coltrane- tenor saxophone; Bill Evans- piano; Paul Chambers- bass; Jimmy Cobb- drums.
I love jazz because anything is possible; it has few rules and the best jazz breaks those ones. I prefer free improv because it doesn't really have any rules at all.
I was first exposed to jazz in my teens (in the late sixties).
The first jazz record I bought was Filles de Kilimanjaro by Miles Davis, shortly followed by Extrapolation by John McLaughlin.
My advice to new listeners is to listen as widely as possible and not to make snap judgments--stick with it.