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Thread: Miles Davis. Miles Davis. Miles Davis.

  1. #51
    My faves are Get Up With It and Big Fun - two more or less compilation albums recorded 1970-1974 where he was mixing influences like James Brown, Calypso, Indian instruments and Karlheinz Stockhausen. Some extended ambient sections and odd rhythmic multi-cultural jams. Great stuff - still ahead of its time. Miles was a unique genius.

  2. #52
    Member No Pride's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mogrooves View Post
    I prefer the SGQ to the Coltrane 4tet (yes, sacrilege, I know!). Hipper all around, imo. I can hear Miles & Co. thinking through complexity, whereas the 4tet was about direct expression, a notion I've always found dubious, though I won't deny its efficacy and the skill with which it is accomplished. The initial self-imposed constraints of the 4tet became something of a trap in time (and ultimately compelled a move to a place that both McCoy & Elvin wouldn't go), whereas the SGQ was much more open within the bounds of absolutely hip structures (sonic "Cubism"). The two groups represent a complementary binary, a kind of ying/yang, Dionysian/Apollonian, cerebration/emotion thing, but I gotta go with Miles at that point in time.
    Well put, Mo... and I totally agree. Miles' 2nd quintet were constantly experimenting with different approaches from one album to the next, while Trane's quartet were stuck in that modal thing for the most part (where there was a "home base" tonality they'd weave in and out of). Not saying they weren't great, they were (and nobody rivaled their intensity)! But it did become somewhat formulaic.

    The odd thing about Miles' group is that they hardly ever played the tunes from the albums live; their setlists had more material from the first quintet.

  3. #53
    Oh No! Bass Solo! klothos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by No Pride View Post
    Well put, Mo... and I totally agree. Miles' 2nd quintet were constantly experimenting with different approaches from one album to the next, while Trane's quartet were stuck in that modal thing for the most part (where there was a "home base" tonality they'd weave in and out of).
    we both know why they did for so long: thats the funnest stuff to get self-indulgent over -- the bad side-effect that it can bore the listener, musicians and non-musicians alike.......I cant tell you how many times I would host or be at a jazz jam and the players would get stuck in a vamp....lots of fun on stage but, after six/seven minutes, I could see we were losing the audience

  4. #54
    Progga mogrooves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by No Pride View Post
    The odd thing about Miles' group is that they hardly ever played the tunes from the albums live; their setlists had more material from the first quintet.
    Yes, and it drives me nuts!!

    Quote Originally Posted by klothos View Post
    we both know why they did for so long: thats the funnest stuff to get self-indulgent
    I take your point, but I don't think Coltrane was self-indulgent. He was a questing, searching human being seeking his own truth in a manner consistent with his beliefs.

    His modal approach reflected a desire to strip away the artifice he experienced in his material and spiritual lives (and his late period music goes even farther in that direction). That approach has as much to do with North Indian raga and Middle Eastern maqam--which require extended musical exegesis in order to satisfy both musical and spiritual goals--as it does "jazz." It's never only about the notes.
    Hell, they ain't even old-timey ! - Homer Stokes

  5. #55
    Member rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mogrooves View Post
    I take your point, but I don't think Coltrane was self-indulgent. He was a questing, searching human being seeking his own truth in a manner consistent with his beliefs.

    His modal approach reflected a desire to strip away the artifice he experienced in his material and spiritual lives (and his late period music goes even farther in that direction). That approach has as much to do with North Indian raga and Middle Eastern maqam--which require extended musical exegesis in order to satisfy both musical and spiritual goals--as it does "jazz." It's never only about the notes.
    You are correct about Trane. However his "sheets of sound" late period playing may not be "self-indulgent" exactly but it requires a certain DETERMINATION (shall we say) from listeners to get through it.

  6. #56
    Moderator Poisoned Youth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by No Pride View Post
    Well put, Mo... and I totally agree. Miles' 2nd quintet were constantly experimenting with different approaches from one album to the next, while Trane's quartet were stuck in that modal thing for the most part (where there was a "home base" tonality they'd weave in and out of). Not saying they weren't great, they were (and nobody rivaled their intensity)! But it did become somewhat formulaic.
    To be clear, I wasn't making a musical or academic declaration. I was talking about which group I get more mileage out of and why. The fact that I listen to that period of Miles less doesn't diminish my admiration or its place and importance in history and my objective wasn't to make it a contest between these two.
    WANTED: Sig-worthy quote.

  7. #57
    Quote Originally Posted by No Pride View Post

    The odd thing about Miles' group is that they hardly ever played the tunes from the albums live; their setlists had more material from the first quintet.
    I talked with a Chicago jazz player once who said he saw the band then and asked Wayne if they would play material from the new albums, and his reply was to the effect of, "it's not going to happen."

  8. #58
    Member Jerjo's Avatar
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    I guess I'm the Great Blasphemer here because I don't get as much mileage out of Miles as some of the other giants of the era. I've got a handful of CDs: Sketches, Kind of Blue, Bitches, Nefertiti, a compilation, My Funny Valentine. I had some of the 80s releases back in the 80s on vinyl but sold them because I was poor and they didn't get much play. I can understand Miles contribution to the genre and appreciate his relentless forward movement.

    I think that my problems here come down to two things. As a composer I think Mingus and Ellington were way ahead of him. Then again, they weren't human so there's that. The muted trumpet sound gets a little old for me. Again, this may be a fault of mine, not Miles. This isn't intended to be a thread crap. I still play Miles' music. Kind of Blue is one of my default "drinking Scotch in the dark" albums. He just doesn't hit the top of jazz pantheon.
    I don't like country music, but I don't mean to denigrate those who do. And for the people who like country music, denigrate means 'put down.'- Bob Newhart

  9. #59
    For me ( a musician) it goes beyond "liking" Miles. Sure there were more technically proficient trumpeters, but what his playing said, how it fed / was fed by the the other players ... magic. He managed to be relevant (if not leading the way) as jazz moved through it's cool, bop, post-bop, and 'electric' phases. The only stuff I don't go back to is at the very end of his recording career.

  10. #60
    That's Mr. to you, Sir!! Trane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by No Pride View Post
    Well put, Mo... and I totally agree. Miles' 2nd quintet were constantly experimenting with different approaches from one album to the next, while Trane's quartet were stuck in that modal thing for the most part (where there was a "home base" tonality they'd weave in and out of). Not saying they weren't great, they were (and nobody rivaled their intensity)! But it did become somewhat formulaic.

    The odd thing about Miles' group is that they hardly ever played the tunes from the albums live; their setlists had more material from the first quintet.


    Woooooowwww, here!!! "stuck"???

    Not only did Trane's "modal jazz albums" all contained at least one "bop jazz" track, but it's not like modal jazz is a prison.... it's a long and winding road of (and not "to") liberty, especially for the listeners once they've (easily) acquired to tools to dig (and the use of narcotics is not the only way).

    Furthermore, though not a big fan of bop jazz), Trane did the ultimate bop albums with Giant Steps and Favourite Things, ones that Miles was never able to outdo (IMHO) even six or seven years later.

    Miles and his quintet

    Quote Originally Posted by mogrooves View Post
    I take your point, but I don't think Coltrane was self-indulgent. He was a questing, searching human being seeking his own truth in a manner consistent with his beliefs.
    His modal approach reflected a desire to strip away the artifice he experienced in his material and spiritual lives (and his late period music goes even farther in that direction). That approach has as much to do with North Indian raga and Middle Eastern maqam--which require extended musical exegesis in order to satisfy both musical and spiritual goals--as it does "jazz." It's never only about the notes.
    indeed his spiritual quest is rather so impressive, to the point that even the atheist I am cannot help but be impressed

    Quote Originally Posted by rcarlberg View Post
    You are correct about Trane. However his "sheets of sound" late period playing may not be "self-indulgent" exactly but it requires a certain DETERMINATION (shall we say) from listeners to get through it.
    The determination, I find, is more fopr the Ascension and beyond stuff IMHO

    His modal stuff is quite accessible - even much more so than the bop-jazz (from him or anyone else)

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerjo View Post
    I guess I'm the Great Blasphemer here because I don't get as much mileage out of Miles as some of the other giants of the era. I've got a handful of CDs: Sketches, Kind of Blue, Bitches, Nefertiti, a compilation, My Funny Valentine. I had some of the 80s releases back in the 80s on vinyl but sold them because I was poor and they didn't get much play. I can understand Miles contribution to the genre and appreciate his relentless forward movement.

    I think that my problems here come down to two things. As a composer I think Mingus and Ellington were way ahead of him. Then again, they weren't human so there's that. The muted trumpet sound gets a little old for me. Again, this may be a fault of mine, not Miles. This isn't intended to be a thread crap. I still play Miles' music. Kind of Blue is one of my default "drinking Scotch in the dark" albums. He just doesn't hit the top of jazz pantheon.
    80's Miles is insignificant, IMHO

    Yes, as composers, Mingus and Ellington were a notch above Trane and three above Miles
    my music collection increased tenfolds when I switched from drug-addicts to complete nutcases.

  11. #61
    Mingus and Ellington put more time and effort into composition than Miles did. Miles did however come up with pieces like "So What" and "Bitches Brew" that were perfect for expressing the concepts he had.

  12. #62
    Quote Originally Posted by No Pride View Post
    The odd thing about Miles' group is that they hardly ever played the tunes from the albums live; their setlists had more material from the first quintet.
    They played more of their own material later on during their run, if the recordings from the recent Live in Europe 1967 release are any indication. Early on in their run, Miles' goal seemed to be to play the '50s Quintet/Sextet's material as fast as humanly possible. The '64-65 recordings of "So What" are almost comical that way.

  13. #63
    Progga mogrooves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by profusion View Post
    recordings of "So What" are almost comical that way.
    "Walkin'" was anything but.
    Hell, they ain't even old-timey ! - Homer Stokes

  14. #64
    Been listening to a lot of the SGQ lately and can't help but wish Shorter had gone in a different direction than the much safer fuzak of Weather Report in the 70s.Such amazing playing and energy on this stuff.

  15. #65
    Does anyone here have The Original Mono Recordings box set and care to comment on it?
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ESEYE60...I2WSQPGB1WFFWE
    I want to dynamite your mind with love tonight.

  16. #66
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Some small random points:

    Miles, like Zappa, was so sharp at choosing the musicians he played with that I can go for weeks or even months of frequent listening without focusing my ear on Miles himself. That's no slight on him (or Frank) - quite the opposite.

    I got some serious mileage out of the Live In Europe 1969 box when it came out... I think it's time to pull that off the shelf again!

    Such astounding musicians, all. I could listen to Tony Williams play forever without getting tired of it... that complete "Circle In The Round" is a joy to me! And Herbie Hancock is one of my favourite musicians of all time... still so sad that I missed his show with Chick Corea in Toronto last year because I was out of town.
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk

  17. #67

  18. #68
    Quote Originally Posted by polmico View Post
    Does anyone here have The Original Mono Recordings box set and care to comment on it?
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ESEYE60...I2WSQPGB1WFFWE
    I've heard it on Spotify. It's great. Do you have a particular question about it?

  19. #69
    Quote Originally Posted by pb2015 View Post
    I've heard it on Spotify. It's great. Do you have a particular question about it?
    Overall quality of the design, liner notes. Is it well put together or one of those flimsy value deals?

    I don't have most of those recordings, so it's a good way to hear all that early stuff. What is the consensus on the mono versions? If you were in my shoes and had to pick between the stereo discs or the mono box, which would you choose?

    General questions, I guess.
    Last edited by polmico; 08-13-2016 at 10:21 AM.
    I want to dynamite your mind with love tonight.

  20. #70
    Member rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Watanabe View Post
    Been listening to a lot of the SGQ lately and can't help but wish Shorter had gone in a different direction than the much safer fuzak of Weather Report in the 70s.Such amazing playing and energy on this stuff.
    OTOH Wayne could probably retire from his WR earnings.

  21. #71
    W.P.O.D. Dan Marsh's Avatar
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    In A Silent Way introduced me to the wonderful world of jazz music.

  22. #72
    Quote Originally Posted by rcarlberg View Post
    OTOH Wayne could probably retire from his WR earnings.
    I've had the thought that Wayne might have gotten lost in the fusion 70's scene if not for the partnership with Joe Zawinul.

  23. #73
    Quote Originally Posted by polmico View Post
    Overall quality of the design, liner notes. Is it well put together or one of those flimsy value deals?

    I don't have most of those recordings, so it's a good way to hear all that early stuff. What is the consensus on the mono versions? If you were in my shoes and had to pick between the stereo discs or the mono box, which would you choose?

    General questions, I guess.
    I can't help regarding the liner notes.

    For me the most notable thing is that as far as I know the box is the only official release of the original mono Miles Ahead. There have been attempts to reconstruct a stereo version of the album (it wasn't released in stereo originally) but, to make a long story short, they have shortcomings. There was also a mono CD in the early 90's but the producer put in an alternate take of one secton.

    As to the other albums, Milestones also originally was mono only. Around the 90's there was a good stereo mix of it released but it is still worth hearing it in its original form. Kind Of Blue works well in stereo but the mono version is a worthwhile alternate view of the album. I'd guess that's true of the others as well although I haven't compared the mixes.

  24. #74
    That's Mr. to you, Sir!! Trane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Marsh View Post
    In A Silent Way introduced me to the wonderful world of jazz music.
    Caravanseari, then Bitches Brew then Love Supreme then Black Saint was my main trail landmarks (of cout-rse , there were intermediary stopovers)
    my music collection increased tenfolds when I switched from drug-addicts to complete nutcases.

  25. #75
    Member rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pb2015 View Post
    I've had the thought that Wayne might have gotten lost in the fusion 70's scene if not for the partnership with Joe Zawinul.
    Wayne did a few fusiony albums on his own. He and Joe were good friends, and Joe helped him during the difficult times in his life.

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