Miles Ahead session details

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April 1946 (a) (6 items; TT = 10:13)
NBC Studios, Hollywood CA
AFRS Jubilee session (B)
Benny Carter Orchestra

Miles Davis (tpt); Howard McGhee (tpt); Fred Trainer (tpt); Calvin Strickland (tpt); Walter Williams (tpt); Ira Pettiford (tpt); Candy Ross (tb); Johnny Morris (tb); Al Grey (tb); Charley Johnson (tb); Benny Carter (as, tpt); Bob Graettinger (as); Joe Epps (as); Harold Clark (ts); Hubert "Bumps" Myers (ts); Willard Brown (ts); James Cannady (g); Sonny White (p); Thomas Moultrie (b); Percy Brice (d); Ernie "Bubbles" Whitman (ann)

1 Introduction (Ernie "Bubbles" Whitman) 0:20

EW: "Well, Benny, welcome back to old Eelibuj." BC: "Thanks, Ernie, it's a pleasure to be back." EW: "What's first up?" BC: "Something a little different from my usual, Ernie -- this is almost a jump tune." EW: "What do you mean, almost a jump tune?" BC: "Well, this is just a hop, skip, and..." EW: "Well, just so it isn't longhair." BC: "Longhair? Heh, why Ernie, this hair is so short it's ingrown." EW: "Then clip us, Benny, clip us..."
2 Who's Sorry Now? (T. Snyder-B. Kalmar-H. Ruby) 2:42

Davis is not audible
3 Introduction (Ernie "Bubbles" Whitman) 0:14

"Yes, indeedy, that left me knock-kneed. Yes, customers, we're really flyin' high now, Mr. Benny Carter milking his Esquire championship alto saxophone for a tasty sampling of 'Can't Get Started' -- ladle it, Mr. C, ladle it..."
4 I Can't Get Started (V. Duke-I. Gershwin) 3:03

Davis is not audible
5 Introduction (Ernie "Bubbles" Whitman) 0:19

"Yes, of course, of course, that was Benny of Carter sending you the sweetest music this side of... Guy Lombardo. Well, here we are, we've arrived, we've landed, this is the end of this line. We're trimming the lamps in Jubilubiland. In other words, the conclusion has been reached, and now for all the congregation, Benny Carter and the orchestra wrap this set's dish up, with specs and spots, namely, 'Jump'..." Many issues include only the last sentence of the introduction. Jazz Door includes an introduction from a different Jubilee session: "Benny Carter and Band now provide an old rocker that really can get you, son..."
6 Jump Call (B. Carter) 3:35

Davis plays a 32-measure solo (0:38-1:05)


1 Introduction (Ernie "Bubbles" Whitman)
12" LP: Queen Disc Q009
CD: Jazz Hour JH-1005

2 Who's Sorry Now?
12" LP: Queen Disc Q009
CD: Jazz Hour JH-1005

3 Introduction (Ernie "Bubbles" Whitman)
12" LP: V-Disc 351
CD: Jazz Hour JH-1005

4 I Can't Get Started
12" LP: V-Disc 351
CD: New Sound Planet/Jazz Up JU-327, Jazz Door JD 1206, Jazz Hour JH-1005

5 Introduction (Ernie "Bubbles" Whitman)
12" LP: V-Disc 701, Jazz Society AA-502, Jazz Anthology JA-5123, Spotlite SPJ-147
CD: New Sound Planet/Jazz Up JU-327, Jazz Door JD 1206, Jazz Hour JH-1005

6 Jump Call
12" LP: V-Disc 701, Jazz Society AA-502, Jazz Anthology JA-5123, Spotlite SPJ-147
CD: New Sound Planet/Jazz Up JU-327, Jazz Door JD 1206, Jazz Hour JH-1005


Davis does not solo on "Who's Sorry Now?" and "I Can't Get Started," though he may be in the ensemble. He begins his solo on "Jump Call" with a quotation from Charlie Parker's "Moose the Mooche," which he and Parker recorded in Hollywood at Radio Recorders Studios on March 28.

There is a lot of uncertainty about the Benny Carter recordings from 1946. Most of the items usually associated with Miles Davis were Armed Forces Radio Services (AFRS) "Jubilee" sessions which were transcribed on 16" 33-1/3 rpm LPs and distributed to radio stations around the world. The four sessions in questions are numbers 184, 186, 191, and 193. Recording sessions were typically an hour, in front of live studio audiences. The recordings were later edited and assembled into 30-minute Jubilee sides. As a result of this, some announcements and introductions were used more than once, and this contributes to the confusion. Recordings for program #184 were made in early April at NBC Studios in Hollywood; the following titles were included: "Who's Sorry Now?", "I Can't Get Started," and "Jump Call." Program #186 is usually dated in May, and includes "One O'Clock Jump," "Just You, Just Me," "Lover Man," and "Bugle Call Rag." Program #191 has a recording date of April 29 and includes the following titles: "Co-Ed," "I'm the Caring Kind," "Frim Fram Sauce," and "Polishing Brass." Program #193 has the same recording date, and the titles listed are "Cutting Time," "Stardust," "Prelude to a Kiss," "I Cover the Waterfront," and "Back Bay Boogie."

Davis joined the Carter band after a January 1946 engagement at the Riviera Club in St. Louis, and travelled to Los Angeles in February. In addition to playing with Carter's orchestra and a smaller Carter group, Davis began sitting in with Charlie Parker at the Finale Club. In March he became a regular member of the Parker Quintet, and he participated in a Dial session on March 28. He continued to play regularly with Carter's bands, as evidenced by a March 31 broadcast from the Streets of Paris. Eventually the musicians' union caught up with him and he was fined; he chose to leave the Carter group. Exactly when this happened is not clear. On April 12 Parker brought an eight-piece band -- Davis, Britt Woodman (tb), Parker, Lucky Thompson (ts), Dodo Marmarosa (p), Arv Garrison (g), Red Callendar (b), and Perc White (d) -- to a concert at UCLA's Carver Club. Also on the bill were Lester Young, the Nat Cole Trio, Herb Jeffries, and Kay Starr.

For an admirable discography, see Carl A. Hällström and Bo Scherman's The AFRS Jubilee Transcription Programs: An Exploratory Discography, Frankfurt am Main: Ruecker, 1985 -- revised and now online, http://home.swipnet.se/dooji/jubilee.htm. I'm grateful to Craig Neilson for his help with these Jubilee sessions, and to Tommaso Urbano for his expertise in identifying the trumpet soloists.

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