Miles Ahead session details

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August 25, 1959 (4 items; TT = 22:01)
Birdland, New York NY
AFRS radio broadcast (B)
Miles Davis Sextet

Miles Davis (tpt); Julian "Cannonball" Adderley (as); John Coltrane (ts); Wynton Kelly (p); Paul Chambers (b); Jimmy Cobb (d); Ray Barrett (ann)

1 The Theme (with voiceover) (M. Davis) 0:43

Voiceover 0:00-0:35: "Your Treasury of Music... From New York's National Broadcasting Company and the American Federation of Musicians by the contributions of the United States Treasury Department, we present your Treasury of Music, featuring tonight from Birdland, jazz corner of the world, the music of the Miles Davis Sextet..."
2 Announcement 0:52

"Before we get into the music, may I pass along a message? You know, the greatest gift you can give a child, give anyone, is peace -- a peaceful world in which to grow and live. And you can help do this, simply by investing in America's Peace Power, our country's ability to keep the peace and make it lasting. You can do this very easily, very simply -- just invest in United States Savings Bonds. United States Savings Bonds are a safe spot for your money, too. They're guaranteed against loss by theft, against fire or market fluctuation; their cash value can never drop, it can only grow, grow to provide for you future, the future security of your family. Doesn't it make sense to invest in America, in America's Peace Power? Why not make it a point to start buying United States Savings Bonds where you work or where you bank first thing tomorrow morning? Now from Birdland, the jazz corner of the world, the Miles Davis Sextet and 'So What'..."
3 So What (M. Davis) 12:05
4 The Theme (incomplete) (M. Davis) 8:21

Voiceover 7:25-8:20: "From Cloud Nine, otherwise known as Birdland, the jazz corner of the world, you've been listening to your Treasury of Music, as a contribution of the National Broadcasting Company and the American Federation of Musicians to the United States Savings Bonds and the Treasury Department. Our artists tonight have been the wonderful Miles Davis Sextet. We wish to thank the American Federation of Musicians. Remember, there is no finer investment than United States Savings Bonds. Your Treasury of Music reminds you to invest in Bonds tomorrow and keep on buying them regularly. It's an investment in your country, and in your own future security. So, until we meet again, speaking for the wonderful Miles Davis Sextet, this is Ray Barrett saying goodnight... Treasury of Music has come to you through the worldwide facilities of the Armed Forces Radio and Television Service."


1 The Theme (with voiceover)
CD: Rare Live Recordings RLR 88666

2 Announcement
CD: Rare Live Recordings RLR 88666

3 So What
CD: Rare Live Recordings RLR 88666

4 The Theme (incomplete)
CD: Rare Live Recordings RLR 88666


This was recorded for AFRS's Treasury of Music show; it was broadcast on AFRS September 16, 1960.

Some tapes include an additional minute or so of "Lullaby of Birdland" (the show's theme) after the concluding voiceover. Also, on some tapes "So What" is interrupted after Kelly's solo, where a one-minute announcement is inserted: "Now, while Miles Davis and the Sextet catch their collective breath, let's listen to this message... (Different announcer:) Four Navy ships arrived off the coast of Colombo, Ceylon -- the U.S.S. Duxberry, U.S.S. Princeton, U.S.S. Sutherland, and U.S.S. Henderson. They were there to take part in the rescue work made necessary by one of the worst floods in the history of Ceylon. Over 300 tons of food were offloaded and dispatched to the disaster areas. 160 tons were air-lifted by the helicopters of the Princeton. Medical teams from all the Navy ships immunized thousands of people to prevent epidemic outbreaks. They also purified the drinking water. After five days of 24-hours-a-day work, the flood waters receded, and the emergency passed. The spirit and teamwork displayed by these Navy men gave us all a thought to remember: we are Americans; as we go, so goes America... (Original announcer:) Back now to the Miles Davis Sextet and the final portion of 'So What'..."

The Davis Sextet had begun a two-week engagement at Birdland on Thursday, August 13; during the two-week engagement the group also performed at the Randall's Island Jazz Festival on Sunday, August 23. Davis was beaten and arrested outside Birdland during a late intermission on August 25-26. News of the beating appeared in the New York Times on Wednesday, August 26. Adderley left the group after this gig. Davis sued the City of New York and had to attend to legal matters throughout the autumn, and he and Gil Evans were beginning plans for sessions that would result in the Sketches of Spain album, but the Quintet continued to perform throughout the fall: Cotton Club, Atlantic City NJ (September 1-6); Showboat, Philadelphia (September 7-16); Birdland, New York (September 17-October 7); Assembly Hall, Hunter College, New York (Sunday, October 4, 8:30pm); Academy of Music, Philadelphia (Sunday, October 11); Howard Theatre, Washington DC (October 16-22); Brooklyn Paramount, New York (October 23-29); Birdland, New York (November 5-25); St. Nicholas Arena, New York (Friday, November 27, 9:00 pm); Club 12, Detroit (December 11-20); Regal Theatre, Chicago (December 25-31).

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