Miles Ahead session details

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June 7, 1955 (6 items; TT = 35:23)
Rudy van Gelder Studio, Hackensack NJ
Commercial for Prestige
Miles Davis Quartet

Miles Davis (tpt); William "Red" Garland (p); Oscar Pettiford (b); Philly Joe Jones (d)

1 I Didn't (M. Davis) 6:02
2 Will You Still Be Mine? (M. Dennis-T. Adair) 6:18
3 Green Haze (M. Davis) 5:48
4 I See Your Face Before Me (H. Dietz-A. Schwartz) 4:42
5 A Night in Tunisia (D. Gillespie-F. Paparelli) 7:19
6 A Gal in Calico (L. Robin-A. Schwartz) 5:14


1 I Didn't
12" LP: Prestige 7007, Prestige P-012 (12 LP), Analogue Productions AJAZ 7007 (45 rpm), Victor SMJ-6518, Victor VIJ-5090/5101 (12 LP)
CD: Fantasy OJC-004, Prestige 8PCD-012, DCC GZS-1106, Victor VICJ-23601, Victor VICJ-40225/32, Victor VICJ-60341, Victor VICJ-2040, Victor VICJ-41156, Universal UCCO-9093, Universal UCCO-5096

2 Will You Still Be Mine?
12" LP: Prestige 7007, Prestige P-012 (12 LP), Analogue Productions AJAZ 7007 (45 rpm), Victor SMJ-6518, Victor VIJ-5090/5101 (12 LP)
CD: Fantasy OJC-004, OJC-6017, Prestige 8PCD-012, DCC GZS-1106, Victor VICJ-23601, Victor VICJ-40225/32, Victor VICJ-60341, Victor VICJ-2040, Victor VICJ-41156, Universal UCCO-9093, Universal UCCO-5096

3 Green Haze
45 rpm: Prestige 45-103
12" LP: Prestige 7007, Prestige P-012 (12 LP), Analogue Productions AJAZ 7007 (45 rpm), Victor SMJ-6518, Victor VIJ-5090/5101 (12 LP)
CD: Fantasy OJC-004, Prestige PRCD 11004, Prestige 8PCD-012, DCC GZS-1106, Victor VICJ-23601, Victor VICJ-40225/32, Victor VICJ-60341, Victor VICJ-2040, Victor VICJ-41156, Universal UCCO-9093, Universal UCCO-5096

4 I See Your Face Before Me
12" LP: Prestige 7007, Moodsville MVLP 2, Prestige P-012 (12 LP), Analogue Productions AJAZ 7007 (45 rpm), Victor SMJ-6518, Victor VIJ-5090/5101 (12 LP)
CD: Fantasy OJC-004, Prestige 8PCD-012, DCC GZS-1106, Victor VICJ-23601, Victor VICJ-40225/32, Victor VICJ-60341, Victor VICJ-2040, Victor VICJ-41156, Universal UCCO-9093, Universal UCCO-5096

5 A Night in Tunisia
45 rpm: Prestige 45-114
12" LP: Prestige 7007, Prestige P-012 (12 LP), Analogue Productions AJAZ 7007 (45 rpm), Victor SMJ-6518, Victor VIJ-5090/5101 (12 LP)
CD: Fantasy OJC-004, Prestige PRCD 5701, Prestige 8PCD-012, DCC GZS-1106, Victor VICJ-23601, Victor VICJ-40225/32, Victor VICJ-60341, Victor VICJ-2040, Victor VICJ-41156, Universal UCCO-9093, Universal UCCO-5096

6 A Gal in Calico
12" LP: Prestige 7007, Prestige P-012 (12 LP), Analogue Productions AJAZ 7007 (45 rpm), Victor SMJ-6518, Victor VIJ-5090/5101 (12 LP)
CD: Fantasy OJC-004, Prestige FCD 60015, Prestige 8PCD-012, DCC GZS-1106, Victor VICJ-23601, Victor VICJ-40225/32, Victor VICJ-60236, Victor VICJ-41438, Victor VICJ-60341, Victor VICJ-2040, Victor VICJ-41156, Universal UCCO-9093, Universal UCCO-5096


This is Red Garland's first session with Davis, and Philly Joe Jones returns. Both were members of Davis's working group, which also included Sonny Rollins and Paul Chambers. The group had been booked in Philadelphia (Blue Note Club, April 18-24) and was busy in New York (Stuyvesant Casino, May 13; Paramount Hotel, May 14). And of course Davis would soon make his "comeback" at Newport in July, playing in an all-star group with Thelonious Monk and others.

"I Didn't" is based on Monk's "Well, You Needn't." Davis plays open trumpet and takes a four-chorus solo; Garland follows with three of his own before the theme is re-stated. Jones switches to brushes when Garland solos, then returns to sticks when Davis re-enters.

Davis remains on open trumpet for "Will You Still Be Mine?", an upbeat tune associated with the Ahmad Jamal Trio. Over the next few years Jamal would exert a powerful influence on Davis, enough so that Davis could say in 1958, "All my inspiration today comes from Chicago pianist Ahmad Jamal." Solos are by Davis (3x, muted), Garland (2x), and Davis again (2x). The tune also incorporates the tag ending Jamal had developed.

"Green Haze" is a blues, taken at a medium tempo and featuring solos by Garland (2x), Davis (3x), Pettiford (1x, with Jones on brushes), Davis again (1x).

Davis is muted on the reflective ballad "I See Your Face Before Me." He takes a two-chorus solo, followed by one of Garland and a closing chorus by Davis. Again, Jones switches to brushes for Garland's solo. The quiet muted-trumpet sound and spare phrasing nicely illustrate the approach to ballads Davis would take with his quintets over the next few years.

"A Night in Tunisia," a perennial live staple, begins with a bass/tambourine introduction; after a long statement of the melody, Davis takes two choruses, Garland two; Davis enters at the bridge and he and Jones play a half-chorus of four-bar trumpet/drums exchanges, then Davis has a closing chorus to himself.

Davis is back to the mute on "A Gal in Calico," another Jamal favorite. Solos are by Davis (4x), Garland (2x), Davis (1x).

Taken by itself this is a pleasant enough, straightforward session. But seen with an eye to where Davis would go over the next several years, it seems a lot more significant.

This was also the first of Davis's Prestige sessions to be released in the label's new series of 12" LPs (Musings of Miles, PRLP 7007). These records began appearing in August 1955; Musings of Miles was reviewed by Nat Hentoff in the November 2, 1955 issue of Down Beat (he gave the LP five stars).

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