Miles Davis was the most influential trumpet player in the history of jazz, at the forefront of almost every significant development. This collection of meticulously remastered recordings explores the origins of a twentieth century jazz icon.
Miles Davis's name is synonymous with twentieth-century jazz. Alongside Louis Armstrong and Dizzy Gillespie, he is one of the three most influential trumpet players in the history of jazz.
Miles Dewey Davis got his first trumpet at the age of 9 or 10 and took lessons from Elwood Buchanan. By 1948 he had formed his own nine-piece band with a revolutionary new horn section of trumpet, alto saxophone, baritone saxophone, trombone, French horn and tuba, backed by piano, bass and drums.
Employing arrangements by Gil Evans and others, this line-up - featuring Kai Winding, Lee Konitz, Gerry Mulligan, John Lewis, J. J. Johnson and Kenny Clarke - recorded three seminal sessions that were later collected together on an LP under the title The Birth Of The Cool. The name was entirely appropriate, for this music marked a break with bebop and the emergence of a new 'cool' jazz style that was to prove hugely influential (represented on this collection by the tracks 'Jeru' and 'Boplicity').
The Columbia contract in the mid-1950s - the label he was to remain with for the next thirty years - enabled Davis to put together a stellar quintet featuring John Coltrane, Red Garland, Paul Chamberand Philly Joe Jones. The period is represented on this Rough Guide collection by the tracks 'Nature Boy' and ''Round Midnight'. In 1957, Davis teamed up again with arranger Gil Evans on the album 'Miles Ahead', with a twelve-strong brass orchestra to create one of the great lyrical masterpieces of modern jazz (represented here by the title track, 'Blues For Pablo' and 'New Rhumba').
With saxophonist Cannonball Adderley added to the Coltrane, Garland, Chambers and Jones line-up to create the Miles Davis Sextet, he recorded the 1958 album Milestones (represented on this collection by the title track and 'Dr Jackle').
Alternating his recordings between his quintet/sextet and orchestral albums, Davis teamed up again with the pianist/arranger Gil Evans on an album of masterful arrangements of music from Gershwin's 'Porgy And Bess' (heard here on magnificent takes on 'Summertime' and 'The Buzzard Song').
With a new line-up Miles Davis recorded 'Kind Of Blue', one of the most famous and influential landmarks in jazz history, which presaged a new form of modal jazz, full of sculpted elegance and profound mystery. This album - not only Davis's best-selling album, but the biggest-selling jazz album of all time&;mdashis represented on this compilation by 'Blue In Green' and 'Stella By Starlight', with which the Rough Guide compilation of Davis's early career concludes.
CD1: Miles Davis: Birth Of A Legend
01 The Miles Davis Nonet: Jeru (1949)
02 The Miles Davis Nonet:Boplicity (1949)
03 Miles Davis:Ezz-thetic (1951)
04 The Miles Davis Quintet:Dear Old Stockholm (1952)
05 Miles Davis:Nature Boy (1955)
06 The Miles Davis Quintet:'Round Midnight (1956)
07 Miles Davis:Miles Ahead (1957)
08 Miles Davis:Blues for Pablo (1957)
09 Miles Davis:New Rumba (1957)
10 Miles Davis:Milestones (1958)
11 The Miles Davis Sextet: Dr Jackie (1958)
12 Miles Davis: Summertime (1958)
13 Miles Davis: The Buzzard Song (1958)
14 Blue In Green: (1959)
15 Miles Davis: Stella By Starlight (1959)
CD2 -Bonus CD: Jazz Giants
01 Clark Terry Quintet: Donna Lee (1957)
02 Coleman Hawkins: Wrap Up Your Troubles In Dreams (1945)
03 Lee Konitz: Sound-Lee (1949)
04 Thelonious Monk: Straight No Chaser (1951)
05 Gerry Mulligan: Walking Shoes (1959)
06 Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers: Moanin' (1958)
07 Charles Mingus: Goodbye Pork Pie Hat (1959)
08 Horace Silver: Sister Sadie (1959)
09 John Coltrane: Blue Train (1957)
10 Cannonball Adderley: Autumn Leaves (1958)