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Features 24 bit digital remastering. Comes with a mini description. This collaboration between Miles Davis and producer Marcus Miller (who, except for some cameos, plays all of the other instruments) is quite successful and a bit of a surprise since it is essentially a soundtrack to an obscure film. Dedicated to arranger Gil Evans, the music is greatly influenced by his style with Miller creating an electrified but very warm orchestra to accompany Davis' melodic solos. This was the first of several instances in which Miles Davis, in the twilight of his life, returned to his roots. It's worth searching for.
This package contains the original, studio-concocted Miles Davis set that Miller mostly composed. There's also a previously unreleased gig from that year's Nice Jazz festival, delivered by a powerful octet including the late Bob Berg on tenor sax. As liner-note writer Ashley Kahn points out, I made an about-turn over this music in the 80s, from first doubting it as bland funk to reconsidering it as late-flowering Miles, creativity galvanised by Miller's input. But more importantly, Kahn's fine essay offers insights into Miller's assessment that producing finished studio tracks for Miles to blow on didn't work: you had to leave them as rougher sonic sketches and let his improvising bring them to life.
Amandla doesn't sound like any of the contemporary jazz records of its time, as Miles Davis returns one last time to a leadership role he'd basically abdicated to Fender bassist/multi-instrumentalist Marcus Miller on the preceding Tutu and Siesta. By plugging in with the cream of his live collaborators on Amandla, Miles retained the big band sound of Tutu, but with a more humanized sense of interplay and swing. "Catembe" heralds the third world rhythmic locus which snakes its way through the entire album, while "Jo-Jo" and "Jilli" engender an ongoing call-and-response between front line and back line, between main and secondary themes, as Kenny Garrett's fat, burnished alto lines coil and strike around Davis's more circumspect, muted phrases.
After 30-plus years with Columbia Records, Miles Davis departed to sign with Warner Brothers Records. TUTU finds Miles entering the world of MIDI, chaperoned by former sideman, Marcus Miller and pop jazz hitmaker Tommy LiPuma, and beat box music would never be the same again.
TUTU is the birth of a new kind of cool, based on the emblematic street beats of the mid-1980s, brimming over with orchestrally-styled keyboard programming. The album is a showcase for Miles' evocative muted horn, functioning like a featured vocalist. Not since his work with Gil Evans had Miles deferred so much to a collaborator, and TUTU is a platform for the arranging talents of Miller, who in addition to his distinctive, popping bass lines, plays nearly every instrument on the session–from keyboards to bass clarinet.