The first entry in the extensive series of piano solo recitals held at Maybeck Recital Hall features the great Joanne Brackeen. Although classified by some originally as an avant-gardist inspired by McCoy Tyner, Brackeen continued to grow in stature and by the late '80s had her own style. She is respectful but passionate on seven standards (keeping the melody in mind during her explorations) while her four originals are given more adventurous improvisations. […] Well worth checking out. - Scott Yanow at All Music Guide
Miles Davis' recordings of 1951-1954 tend to be overlooked because of his erratic lifestyle of the period and because they predated his first classic quintet. Although he rarely recorded during this era, what he did document was often quite classic. The two sessions included on this CD (which includes three alternate takes) are among the earliest hard bop recordings and would indirectly influence the modern mainstream music of the 1960s. The first session features Davis in a sextet with trombonist J.J. Johnson, altoist Jackie McLean, pianist Gil Coggins, bassist Oscar Pettiford, and drummer Kenny Clarke; highlights include "Dear Old Stockholm," "Woody 'n You," and interpretations of "Yesterdays" and "How Deep Is the Ocean." The remaining six numbers showcase Davis in a quartet with pianist Horace Silver, bassist Percy Heath, and drummer Art Blakey, really stretching out on such numbers as "Take Off" and "Well, You Needn't." However, on "It Never Entered My Mind," Davis' muted statement (his only one on this set) looks toward his treatments of ballads later in the decade.
The explosive transformation of Miles Davis’ “second great Quintet” with Wayne Shorter (tenor sax), Herbie Hancock (piano), Ron Carter (bass), and Tony Williams (drums) is laid bare on this release. Culled from original state-owned television and radio sources in Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, and Sweden, the program spans five northern European festival performances over the course of nine days in October-November 1967. The audio shows consist entirely of previously unreleased or previously only bootlegged material. This is a 3-CD + DVD package, with an 8-panel digipak with 28-page booklet.
Rare deluxe compilation that sounds and looks in all ways amazing. Some great picks on here in Miles' own Deception, Gerry Mulligan's Jeru or Baden Powell's Budo for starters. Lovely audophile piece in lovely taste.
DECOY is a vivid example of Miles Davis' unerring ear for identifying, casting and nurturing talent. Among those helping out Miles flesh out this modern vision of electric jazz: John Scofield, who ranks among the most progressive of jazz guitarists and composers; reedman Branford Marsalis, who fronted the Tonight Show Band; Darryl Jones, who held down the bass chair for Sting and subbed for Bill Wyman in the Rolling Stones; and drummer Al Foster, who went on to work with Sonny Rollins, Joe Henderson and Ron Carter.
Although chronologically the last to be issued, this collection includes some of the best performances from the tapes which would produce the albums Cookin', Relaxin', Workin', and ultimately, Steamin'. A primary consideration of these fruitful sessions is the caliber of musicians – Miles Davis (trumpet), Red Garland (piano), John Coltrane (tenor sax), and Philly Joe Jones (drums) – who were basically doing their stage act in the studio. As actively performing musicians, the material they are most intimate with would be their live repertoire. Likewise, what more obvious place than a studio is there to capture every inescapable audible nuance of the combo's musical group mind. The end results are consistently astonishing.
“I was the engineer on the recording sessions and I also made the masters for the original LP issues of these albums. Since the advent of the CD, other people have been making the masters. Mastering is the final step in the process of creating the sound of the finished product. Now, thanks to the folks at the Concord Music Group who have given me the opportunity to remaster these albums, I can present my versions of the music on CD using modern technology. I remember the sessions well, I remember how the musicians wanted to sound, and I remember their reactions to the playbacks. Today, I feel strongly that I am their messenger.” —Rudy Van Gelder