Miles Ahead session details

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February 21, 1953 (5 items; TT = 22:44)
Howard Theatre, Washington DC
Audience recording (B-)
All-Star jam session

Miles Davis (tpt); Allen Eager (ts); Terry Swope (p); Unknown (b); Max Roach (d); Charlie Parker (as); Jack Holliday (p); Franklin Skeete (b)

1 A Night in Tunisia (D. Gillespie-F. Paparelli) 4:39
2 Ornithology (incomplete) (C. Parker-B. Harris) 4:20

Davis out
3 Out of Nowhere (E. Heyman-J.W. Green) 4:36

Davis out
4 Cool Blues (C. Parker) 4:13

Davis out
5 Anthropology (D. Gillespie-C. Parker) 4:56

Davis out


1 A Night in Tunisia
CD: Domino 891221

2 Ornithology (incomplete)
12" LP: VGM 0009, Deep Morgan 10001
CD: Blue Note 22626, Philology Volume 18 (W 848), Volume 32 (W 863), Volume 59 (W 890)

3 Out of Nowhere
12" LP: VGM 0009, Deep Morgan 10001
CD: Blue Note 22626, Philology Volume 18 (W 848), Volume 32 (W 863)

4 Cool Blues
12" LP: VGM 0009, Deep Morgan 10001
CD: Blue Note 22626, Philology Volume 26 (W 857), Volume 32 (W 863)

5 Anthropology
12" LP: VGM 0009, Deep Morgan 10001
CD: Blue Note 22626, Philology Volume 18 (W 848), Volume 32 (W 863)


Davis plays only on "A Night in Tunisia"; the other four titles feature Charlie Parker in a quartet setting.

The Parker titles are often dated March 8 (as on Blue Note CDP 22626), but advertisements for Willis Conover's "House of Sounds" concert on March 8 at the Howard Theatre do not mention Parker. Further, Parker was booked at Storyville in Boston from March 7-15 (Thursday-Sunday), and on March 10 WHDH even included 25 minutes of Parker's music as part of the "Music from Storyville" segment. So March 8 seems like the wrong date for these four titles.

On the other hand, advertisements for Willis Conover's "Jazz at Midnite No. 9 mention Miles Davis, Allen Eager, Max Roach, Terry Swope, Joe Theimer "and many, many others -- plus -- A BIG 'SURPRISE' GUEST." That guest -- "said to be one of the big names in jazz today," according to another contemporary account -- was almost certainly Parker, and it seems likely that the four quartet titles listed here were all recorded at the same midnight all-star session, not on March 8.

I'm grateful to Leif Bo Petersen for his help with this session.

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