Friday, January 01, 2010

Miles Davis - In Paris Festival International de Jazz (Columbia, 1977)

Taking a break from his duties with the Charlie Parker band, this live album is a fascinating glimpse of Miles while still forming, playing fast and hard bebop trumpet with Tadd Dameron and James Moody along with Pierre Michelot on bass and Kenny Clarke on drums. He rips through the Dameron originals like "Good Bait" with an agility borne of playing with the likes of Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, but it is on the ballads that we really hear the Miles to come. This album is a very interesting look at the road not taken, as Miles would soon return to the United States and form his famous Birth of the Cool Nonet and say good-bye to orthodox bebop. A young James Moody is very impressive as well, sticking to alto and playing with the fleet grace he would keep up for the next sixty plus years. The over-enthusiastic French disc jockey talking over the music at times and the muddy sound quality makes gives this something of a bootleg feel, but it is worth slogging through to hear some great music. In Paris Festival International de Jazz - amazon.com

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