Barbara – Barbara a l’écluse (1959)

FrontCover1Monique Andrée Serf (June 9, 1930 – November 24, 1997), whose stage name was Barbara, was a French singer. She took her stage name from her grandmother, Varvara Brodsky, a native of Odessa, Russian Empire (now Ukraine). Her song “L’Aigle noir” sold 1 million copies in twelve hours.

Born in Paris to a Jewish family, Barbara was ten years old when she had to go into hiding during the German occupation of France in World War II. After the war ended, a neighborhood professor of music heard her sing and took an interest in helping her develop her talents. She was given vocal lessons and taught to play the piano, and eventually she enrolled at the Ecole Supérieure de Musique. Money was a problem and she gave up her musical studies to sing at “La Fontaine des Quatre Saisons,” a popular cabaret in Paris.

She was deeply scarred by the war and her family’s plight. The feelings of emptiness experienced during childhood showed in her songs, particularly “Mon Enfance”. She said in her uncompleted autobiography, Il était un piano noir (assembled from notes found after her death), that her father sexually abused her when she was ten and she hated him for that. He later abandoned the family.

Barbara06A tall person, Barbara dressed in black as she sang melancholy songs of lost love. From 1950 to 1952, after her father’s desertion of her family, she lived in Brussels, where she became part of an active artistic community. Her painter and writer friends took over an old house, converting it into workshops and a concert hall with a piano where she performed the songs of Édith Piaf, Juliette Gréco and Germaine Montero. However, her career evolved slowly and she struggled constantly to eke out a living.

Returning to Paris, she met Jacques Brel and became a lifelong friend, singing many of his songs. Later she met Georges Brassens, whose songs she began to use in her act and to record on her first album. In the 1950s, she sang at some of the smaller clubs and began building a fan base, particularly with the young students from the Latin Quarter. In 1957, she went back to Brussels to record her first single, but it was not until 1961 that she got a real break when she sang at the Bobino Music-Hall in Montparnasse. Dressed in a long black robe, she gave a haunting performance, but the Parisian critics said she lacked naturalness and was stiff and formal in her presentation. She continued to perform at small clubs, and two years later at the Théâtre des Capucines she succeeded with the audience and critics alike, singing new material she had written herself. From that point on, her career blossomed and she signed a major recording contract in 1964 with Philips Records.

Barbara05
Influenced originally by songwriters Mireille and Pierre MacOrlan, she developed her own style and the writing of her own songs transformed her image into that of a unique singer-songwriter. In the 1960s, she wrote her landmark song, “Ma plus belle histoire d’amour c’est vous” (“My Most Beautiful Love Story Is You”), and others for which she remains famous such as “L’aigle noir”, “Nantes”, “La solitude”, “Göttingen” and “Une petite cantate.” These five songs plus “Dis, quand reviendras-tu?” were translated into German by Belgian-German singer-songwriter Didier Caesar. The song “Göttingen” (named after the German city of Göttingen) is said to have contributed more to post-war German–French reconciliation than any speech by a politician. On the 40th anniversary of the Elysée agreement, ex-chancellor Gerhard Schröder quoted from the song in his official speech in the Château de Versailles.

She returned to Bobino in 1964 for several sold-out performances. She performed at the Paris Olympia and other important venues in France, becoming one of her country’s most beloved stars. In 1965, she released the album Barbara chante Barbara, which became a critical and financial success, winning the Grand Prix du Disque of the Charles Cros Academy. At the award ceremony, Barbara tore her award into several pieces, giving a piece to each of her technicians as a sign of her gratitude.

Barbara01
In 1969, she wrote the theme song “Moi, je me balance” for the film “La fiancée du pirate”. She announced that she would limit her concert singing, and in 1970 she made her acting début in the stage play Madame that proved to be a commercial flop. In 1971 she co-starred with Jacques Brel in a film he directed titled Franz. Two years later she starred in L’Oiseau rare directed by Jean-Claude Brialy. Her final film role came in 1975 in Je suis né à Venise by choreographer Maurice Béjart.

Barbara’s career remained active in the 1970s, with appearances on television variety shows with stars such as Johnny Hallyday and a tour of Japan, Canada, Belgium, Israel, the Netherlands and Switzerland. Through the 1980s, she continued to tour and to write songs; her album Seule was one of France’s top grossing releases of 1981. The next year she was awarded the Grand Prix du Disque in recognition of her contribution to French culture. She developed a close working relationship with rising film star Gérard Depardieu and his wife Élisabeth, collaborating on songs for film and records. In 1986 she went to New York City to perform on piano at the Metropolitan Opera with Mikhail Baryshnikov in a song and dance ballet presentation. She co-wrote the music for the stage play Lily Passion with Luc Plamondon, in which she co-starred with Depardieu. It told the story of a killer who murders someone each time he hears her sing.

In the latter part of the 1980s she became active in the fight against AIDS. She recorded SID’Amour à mort and gave out condoms at performances. In 1988 the government of France awarded her the Legion of Honour. Health problems impeded her performing and she began to devote time to the writing of her memoirs. However, she recorded another successful album in 1996—which sold over a million copies in twelve hours—before she died of respiratory problems in Neuilly-sur-Seine (a suburb of Paris), on November 24, 1997. She was interred in the family grave at the Cimetière de Bagneux in southwest Paris.

Barbara03
In October 1953 she married Claude John Luc Sluys, a Belgian law student, but they separated in 1956. She wrote many very personal songs, “Nantes” about her father, “Une petite cantate” dedicated to her friend Liliane Bénelli, born Gnansia, who died in a car accident in 1965. Later in life, she wrote a song to her public “Ma plus belle histoire d’amour” and another about her musicians “Mes hommes”.

Barbara’s musical legacy is revealed in the writing of a number of singers, French-speaking and otherwise. A style referred to as “Nouvelle Chanson”, or “New Chanson”, artists such as Keren Ann, Benjamin Biolay, Coralie Clement, Emilie Simon, Daphné, Vincent Delerm and Tancrède are often cited as exponents of the updated style. One of the few English-speaking artists to cover her work is Marc Almond, whose version of “Amours Incestueuses” (“Incestuous Loves”) was released on his 1996 album “Absinthe”. The Anglo-French biographer David Bret, a close friend of Barbara, wrote at her behest “Les Hommes Bafoués”, a song about AIDS prejudice. Bret also adapted three of her songs, “Ma Plus Belle Histoire D’Amour”, “La Solitude”, and “Précy Jardin” into English for Barbara. These were taped in 1992, but so far have never been released. Maria del Mar Bonet, a Catalan singer made, in 1971, a cover of L’Aigle Noir in Catalan and made a success of it in Spanish-language countries. L’Aigle Noir has also been adapted and sung in Spanish, and Swedish (Rikard Wolff), and many times in Japanese, also with great success.

Rendez-vous avec : Barbara

Well-known contemporary artists such as New York based Martha Wainwright, Spanish singer-songwriter Conchita Mendivil (who both recently reprised “Dis, Quand Reviendras-tu?”, and Regina Spektor (with “Après Moi”), and London-based singer-songwriter Ana Silvera have reprised songs sung by Barbara. Marc Almond also released a version of Barbara’s “Amours incestueuses” in 1993. (by wikipedia)

This debut album was recorded live at the “L´ecuse” (a very well known traditional bar in Paris.)
And it´s such an intensive and intimate performance … one of the finest french “chanteuse” ever !

Barbara07

Personnel:
Barabara (vocals, piano, accordeon)

BackCover

Tracklist:
01. La Femme D’Hector (Brassens) 2.40
02. Souvenance (Schlesser) 2.35
03. Il Nous Faut Regarder (Brel) 1.49
04. Un Monsieur Me Suis Dans La Rue (Chanois/Besse) 4.47
05. Les Amis D’Monsieur (Fragson) 2.09
06. Tais-Toi, Marseilles (Datin/Vidalin) 3.06
07. La Belle Amour (Poissonnier/Serf) 2.43
08. La Joconde (Braffort) 1.47
09. Les Sirènes (Sabouraud) 3.16

LabelB1

*
**

Barbara02

 

Here´s a live performance from 1956 at the L’Écluse, Paris

Advertisements

Zoot Sims + Bob Brookmeyer Octet – Stretching Out (1959)

FrontCover1Stretching Out is an album by the Zoot Sims-Bob Brookmeyer Octet recorded in 1958 for the United Artists label.

Like many studio sessions recorded for United Artists, this 1958 session co-led by Zoot Sims and Bob Brookmeyer can be a bit tricky to find. Brookmeyer contributed most of the charts, including the easygoing blues which serves as the title track, as well as updated treatments of Jelly Roll Morton’s “King Porter Stomp” and “Ain’t Misbehavin’.” Al Cohn is responsible for a swinging chart of “Pennies from Heaven” during which he switches to baritone sax, while Bill Potts wrote and arranged “Bee Kay.” The rest of the superb band includes Harry “Sweets” Edison, Hank Jones, bassist Eddie Jones, guitarist Freddie Green, and drummer Charlie Persip. Aside from a few innocuous reed squeaks, the music is essentially flawless and has stood the test of time very well. Although U.S. reissues have been sparse, Fresh Sound re-released an LP of this music and Toshiba also put out a CD edition in Japan. In any case, fans of cool jazz will want to locate a copy of this session. (by Ken Dryden)

And yes, the cover is a very nice one !

Sims1

Zoot Sims & Bob Brookmeyer

Personnel:
Bob Brookmeyer (trombone)
Al Cohn (saxophone)
Harry “Sweets” Edison (trumpet)
Freddie Green (guitar)
Eddie Jones (bass)
Hank Jones (piano)
Charlie Persip (drums)
Zoot Sims (saxophone)

BackCover1
Tracklist:
01. Stretching Out (Brookmeyer) 6.07
02. Now Will You Be Good? (Pease/Terker/Jentes) 5.27
03. Pennies From Heaven (Johnston/Burke) 6.14
04. King Porter Stomp (Morton) 4.37
05. Ain’t Misbehavin’ (Brooks/Waller/Razaf) 6.52
06. Bee Kay (Potts) 6.38

LabelB1
*
**

Charlie Byrd – Mr. Guitar (1959)

FrontCover1Mr. Guitar is an album by American jazz guitarist Charlie Byrd featuring tracks recorded in 1960 and released on the Riverside label in 1962. The album was first released on the Washington Records Offbeat imprint as Jazz at the Showboat, Vol. 3 but only received limited distribution prior to Byrd signing with Riverside. (by wikipedia)

A delightful trio outing with an adroit and light feel, also featuring Keter Betts on bass and Bertell Knox on drums. Byrd’s playing combines jazz swing with influences from both Spanish guitar and classical music on a session comprised of both Byrd originals and covers, usually of Gershwin and Ellington tunes. Betts and Knox are both nimble players who flesh out Byrd’s arrangements without encumbering them, Knox exhibiting a deft touch on the snares in particular. Byrd swings pretty hard on numbers like “Gypsy in My Soul,” and gets more into the Spanish sound on the original “Funky Flamenco”; there is one chance for the musicians to stretch out into more space, on the six-minute “Lay the Lily Low.” It sounds like this album was a substantial influence upon the noted eclectic British folk guitarist Davy Graham, whose debut LP from the early ’60s, Guitar Player, has arrangements that are similar to much of what’s on Mr. Guitar. (by Richie Unterberger)

CharlieByrd2

Personnel:
Keter Betts (bass)
Charlie Byrd (guitar)
Bertell Knox (drums)

BackCover1

Tracklist:
01. Blues for Felix (Byrd) -2.57
02. Gypsy In My Soul (Boland/Jaffe) 2.54
03. In A Mellotone (Ellington) 3.13
05. Prelude To A Kiss (Ellington/Gordon/Mills) 4.43
06. Travelin’ On (Byrd) 2.34
07. Play Fiddle, Play (Altman/Deutsch/Lawrence) 3.35
08. Funky Flamenco (Byrd) 2.49
09. My One And Only (Gershwin) 2.41
10. Mama, I’ll Be Home Some Day (Byrd) 3.11
11. How Long Has This Been Going On? (Gershwin) 3.41
12. Who Cares? (Gershwin) 2.12
13. Lay The Lily Low (Byrd) 5.54

LabelA1

*
**

AlternateFrontCover
Alternate frontcover

Ronnie Hawkins – Same (1959)

FrontCover1Ronald Hawkins, OC, (born January 10, 1935) is an American/Canadian rockabilly musician whose career has spanned more than half a century. His career began in Arkansas, where he was born and raised. He found success in Ontario, Canada, and has lived there for most of his life. He is considered highly influential in the establishment and evolution of rock music in Canada.

Also known as “Rompin’ Ronnie”, “Mr. Dynamo”, or simply “The Hawk”, he was one of the key players in the 1960s rock scene in Toronto. Throughout his career, Hawkins has performed all across North America and recorded more than twenty-five albums. His hit songs included covers of Chuck Berry’s “Thirty Days” (entitled “Forty Days” by Hawkins) and Young Jessie’s “Mary Lou”, a song about a “gold-digging woman”. Other well-known recordings are “Who Do You Love?”, “Hey Bo Diddley”, and “Susie Q”, which was written by his cousin, rockabilly artist Dale Hawkins.

Hawkins is also notable for his role as something of a talent scout and mentor. He played a pivotal role in the establishment of premiere backing musicians via his band, the Hawks. The most successful of those eventually formed The Band, while other musicians Hawkins had recruited went on to form Robbie Lane and the Disciples, Janis Joplin’s Full AdTilt Boogie Band, Crowbar, Bearfoot, and Skylark.

Hawkins was born in 1935 in Huntsville, Arkansas, two days after the birth of Elvis Presley. When he was nine years old, his family moved to nearby Fayetteville, Arkansas. After graduating from high school, he studied physical education at the University of Arkansas, where he formed his first band, the Hawks. He toured with them throughout Arkansas, Oklahoma and Missouri. Hawkins also owned and operated the Rockwood Club in Fayetteville, where some of rock and roll’s earliest pioneers came to play including Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison and Conway Twitty. (by wikipedia)

And here´s the start of a real legend of Rock N Roll, featuring Levon Helm (pre The Band !)

Listen … this is Rock N Roll and Rock N Roll only … performed by the great Ronnie Hawkins …

RonnieHawkins02

Personnel:
Jimmy “Lefty” Evans (bass)
Ronnie Hawkins (vocals)
Levon Helm (drums)
Jimmy Ray “Luke” Paulman (guitar)
+
Jeanie Greene (background vocals)
Willard “Pop” Jones (piano)
Jerry “Ish” Penfound (saxophone)

BackCover

Tracklist:
01. Forty Days Forty Days (Berry) 2.16
02. Odessa (Hawkins/Magill) 2.15
03. Wild Little Willy (Hawkins/Magill) 2.16
04. Ruby Baby (Hawkins/Magill) 2.13
05. Horace (Hawkins/Magill) 2.33
06. Mary Lou (Hawkins/Magill) 2.08
07. Need Your Lovin’ (Oh So Bad) (Hawkins/Magill) 2.22
08. Dizzy Miss Lizzy (Hawkins/Magill) 1.55
09. One Of These Days (Hawkins/Magill) 2.35
10. Oh Sugar (Hawkins/Magill) 2.15
11. What’ Cha Gonna Do (When The Creek Runs Dry) (Hawkins/Magill) 1.48
12. My Gal Is Red-Hot (Hawkins/Magill) 1.51

Please note: Many songs, like “Dizzy Miss Lizzy” are not written by “Hawkins/Magill” … “Dizzy Miss Lizzy” was written by Larry Williams in 1958 … but those were the days in the Fifties … Money, that´s what I want …

LabelB1
*
**

RonnieHawkins01
Ronnie Hawkins in 2014

The Fleetwoods – Mr. Blue (1959)

FrontCover1Although the Fleetwoods’ sound was smooth, without many of the rougher edges of doo wop groups, they were one of the few white vocal groups of the late ’50s and early ’60s to enjoy success not only on the pop charts, but also the R&B charts. Their forte was ballads — beginning with the 1959 debut single “Come Softly to Me,” they racked up a number of hits over the next three years, and nearly all of them were ballads. The Fleetwoods broke up in 1963, but their songs — particularly “Come Softly to Me” — became pop/rock classics of the pre-British Invasion era.

Gretchen Christopher, Barbara Ellis, and Gary Troxell formed the Fleetwoods while attending high school in Olympia, WA. Originally, the group consisted only of Christopher and Ellis, but the duo soon asked Troxell to accompany them on trumpet. Shortly after his arrival in the group, Troxell abandoned the trumpet and concentrated on singing once the other two members heard a portion of a song he had written. With some notable contributions from Christopher and Ellis, the group wrote “Come Softly to Me” and began performing the song at various events around Olympia, eventually gaining the attention of Bob Reisdorff, who ran the Seattle-based label Dolphin Records.
Dolphin released “Come Softly to Me” early in 1959 and the song became an instant hit, climbing to number one on the pop charts and number five on the R&B charts; it also reached the Top Ten in U.K. The Fleetwoods weren’t able to immediately produce a follow-up single as successful as their debut, but their third single, “Mr. Blue,” was a number one pop and Top Five R&B hit in the U.S. in late 1959.

TheFleetwoods01

By the time of its release, Dolphin had changed its name to Dolton. For the next three years, the Fleetwoods had a string of minor pop hits. The group wasn’t able to consistently place singles in the upper regions of the charts partially because Troxell was drafted into the Navy at the height of the group’s popularity at the end of 1959. Troxell was replaced by Vic Dana, who would later have a string of his own hit singles in the early ’60s.

Single1

The Fleetwoods’ last Top Ten single arrived in the spring of 1961, when “Tragedy” climbed the U.S. charts. The group disbanded two years later, after releasing its final single, a cover of Jesse Belvin’s “Goodnight My Love.” Over the next three decades, the Fleetwoods reunited occasionally to perform concerts and appear in oldies revues. In 1973, the group recorded an album with producer Jerry Dennon, but the resulting recordings were unsuccessful. In 1990, the Fleetwoods — featuring Christopher, Troxell, and instead of Ellis a singer named Cheryl Huggins — played a tour on the American oldies circuit after Rhino released the compact disc Collection  The Best of the Fleetwoods. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

Enjoy this sentimental journey … for romantic people only !

TheFleetwoods02
Personnel:
Gretchen Christopher (vocals)
Barbara Ellis (vocals)
Gary Troxel (vocals)
+
a bunch of unknown studio musicians

BackCover1

Tracklist:
01. Confidential (Morgan) 2.21
02. The Three Caballeros (Cortázar/Esperón/Gilbert) 2.24
03. Raindrops, Teardrops  (Troxel/Christopher/Ellis) 2.31
04. You Mean Everything to Me (Kaspar) 2.31
05. Oh Lord Let It Be  (Troxel/Christopher/Ellis) 2.08
06. Come Softly To Me (Troxel/Christopher/Ellis) 2.25
07. Serenade Of The Bells (Goodhart/Twomey) 2.29
08. Unchained Melody (North/Zaret) 2.46
09. We Belong Together (Carr/Mitchell/Weiss) 1.28
10. Come Go With Me (Quick) 2.16
11. I Care So Much (Troxel/Christopher/Ellis) 1.59
12. Mr. Blue (Blackwell) 2.26

LabelB1
*
**

Various Artists – An Easy Christmas (2001)

frontcover1This is just a sampler, full with 20 old and classic christmas songs, performed by many stars in the easy listening style.
You can hear singers like Don McLean, David Bowie, Andy Williams, Nat King Cole, Doris Day, Perry Como and Al Green.

“This is my most favourite christmas album ever-I had to order a second copy as the first had a scratch on. I listen to it all the time. Not your average Christmas album!”(by miss r aughton)

“Great to listen to while wrapping presents” (by Zoe Bell)

And I guess, I will play this album (amongst others) on December 24, 2016 … Enjoy this romantic and sentimental sampler.

booklet01a

Tracklist:
01. Andy Williams: Most Wonderful Time Of Year (2001) (Pola/Wyle) 2.34
02. Nat King Cole: Christmas Song (1963) (Chestnuts Roasting On An Open Fire) (Tormé/Wells) 3.14
03. Eartha Kitt: Santa Baby (1953) (Javits/Springer) 3.26
04. Dean Martin: Let It Snow Let It Snow Let It Snow (1965) (Cahn/Styne) 1.58
05. Judy Garland: Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas (1944) (Martin/Blane) 2.45
06. Harry Belafonte: Mary’s Boy Child (1957) (Hairston) 2.59
07. Bing Crosby: White Christmas (1954) (Berlin) 3.04
08. Al Green: Silent Night (1963) (Gruber/Mohr) 3.19
09. Crystal Gayle: Rudolph The Red Nose Reindeer (1996) (Marks) 2.57
10. Anne Murray: Snowbird (1978) (MacLellan) 2.11
11. Don McLean: Winter Wonderland (1991) (Bernard/Smith) 2.54
12. Charles Brown: Please Come Home For Christmas (Christmas Finds Me Oh So Sad) (1961) (Brown/Redd) 3.18
13. Doris Day: I’ll Be Home For Christmas (1964) (Gannon/Kent/Ram) 2.27
14. Andy Williams: Sleigh Ride (live) (2001) (Anderson) 2.22
15. Crystal Gayle: Silver Bells (1996) (Livingston/Evans) 4.09
16. Don McLean: Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town (1991) (Coots/Gillespie) 3.06
17. Perry Como: God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen (1959)(Traditional) 2.56
18. Al Green: What Christmas Means To Me (1963) (Story/Gaye/ Gordy) 3.44
19. Bing Crosby + David Bowie: Peace On Earth/Little Drummer Boy (1977) (Fraser/Grossman/Alan Kohan/Simeone/Davis/Onorati) 2.38
20. Michael Ball: Happy New Year (1999) (Andersson/Ulvaeus) 4.18

cd1

*
**

singles
.

 

 

Miles Davis – Kind Of Blue (1959)

OriginalFrontCover1Kind of Blue is a studio album by American jazz musician Miles Davis, released on August 17, 1959, by Columbia Records. It was recorded earlier that year on March 2 and April 22 at Columbia’s 30th Street Studio in New York City. The recording sessions featured Davis’s ensemble sextet, consisting of pianist Bill Evans, drummer Jimmy Cobb, bassist Paul Chambers, and saxophonists John Coltrane and Julian “Cannonball” Adderley, together with pianist Wynton Kelly on one track.

After the entry of Evans into his sextet, Davis followed up on the modal experimentations of Milestones (1958) by basing Kind of Blue entirely on modality, in contrast to his earlier work with the hard bop style of jazz.

Though precise figures have been disputed, Kind of Blue has been described by many music writers not only as Davis’s best-selling album, but as the best-selling jazz record of all time. On October 7, 2008, it was certified quadruple platinum in sales by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

Kind of Blue has been regarded by many critics as jazz’s greatest record, Davis’s masterpiece, and one of the best albums of all time. Its influence on music, including jazz, rock, and classical genres, has led writers to also deem it one of the most influential albums ever recorded. Kind of Blue was one of fifty recordings chosen in 2002 by the Library of Congress to be added to the National Recording Registry, and in 2003, it was ranked number 12 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

MilesDavis01

By late 1958, Davis employed one of the best and most profitable working bands pursuing the hard bop style. His personnel had become stable: alto saxophonist Cannonball Adderley, tenor saxophonist John Coltrane, pianist Bill Evans, long-serving bassist Paul Chambers, and drummer Jimmy Cobb. His band played a mixture of pop standards and bebop originals by Charlie Parker, Thelonious Monk, Dizzy Gillespie, and Tadd Dameron. As with all bebop-based jazz, Davis’s groups improvised on the chord changes of a given song.[1] Davis was one of many jazz musicians growing dissatisfied with bebop, and saw its increasingly complex chord changes as hindering creativity.

MilesDavis02In 1953, the pianist George Russell published his Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization, which offered an alternative to the practice of improvisation based on chords and chord changes. Abandoning the traditional major and minor key relationships, the Lydian Chromatic Concept introduced the idea of chord/scale unity and was the first theory to explore the vertical relationship between chords and scales, as well as the only original theory to come from jazz. This approach led the way to “modal” in jazz. Influenced by Russell’s ideas, Davis implemented his first modal composition with the title track of his studio album Milestones (1958). Satisfied with the results, Davis prepared an entire album based on modality. Pianist Bill Evans, who had studied with Russell but recently departed from Davis’s sextet to pursue his own career, was drafted back into the new recording project, the sessions that would become Kind of Blue.

Kind of Blue was recorded on three-track tape in two sessions at Columbia Records’ 30th Street Studio in New York City. On March 2, 1959, the tracks “So What”, “Freddie Freeloader”, and “Blue in Green” were recorded for side one of the original LP, and on April 22 the tracks “All Blues” and “Flamenco Sketches” were recorded, making up side two. Production was handled by Teo Macero, who had produced Davis’s previous two LPs, and Irving Townsend.

As was Davis’s penchant, he called for almost no rehearsal and the musicians had little idea what they were to record. As described in the original liner notes by pianist Bill Evans, Davis had only given the band sketches of scales and melody lines on which to improvise. Once the musicians were assembled, Davis gave brief instructions for each piece and then set to taping the sextet in studio. While the results were impressive with so little preparation, the persistent legend that the entire album was recorded in one pass is untrue. (by wikipedia)

Studio1

Kind of Blue isn’t merely an artistic highlight for Miles Davis, it’s an album that towers above its peers, a record generally considered as the definitive jazz album. To be reductive, it’s the Citizen Kane of jazz — an accepted work of greatness that’s innovative and entertaining. That may not mean it’s the greatest jazz album ever made, but it certainly is a universally acknowledged standard of excellence. Why does Kind of Blue posses such a mystique? Perhaps it’s that this music never flaunts its genius. It lures listeners in with the slow, luxurious bassline and gentle piano chords of “So What.” From that moment on, the record never really changes pace — each tune has a similar relaxed feel, as the music flows easily. Yet Kind of Blue is more than easy listening. It’s the pinnacle of modal jazz — tonality and solos build from chords, not the overall key, giving the music a subtly shifting quality. All of this doesn’t quite explain why seasoned jazz fans return to this record even after they’ve memorized every nuance.

MilesDavis03

They return because this is an exceptional band – Miles, Coltrane, Bill Evans, Cannonball Adderly, Paul Chambers, Jimmy Cobb, and Wynton Kelly — one of the greatest in history, playing at the peak of its power. As Evans said in the original liner notes for the record, the band did not play through any of these pieces prior to recording. Davis laid out the themes and chords before the tape rolled, and then the band improvised. The end results were wondrous, filled with performances that still crackle with vitality. Few albums of any genre manage to work on so many different levels, but Kind of Blue does. It can be played as background music, yet it amply rewards close listening. It is advanced music that is extraordinarily enjoyable. It may be a stretch to say that if you don’t like Kind of Blue, you don’t like jazz — but it’s hard to imagine it as anything other than a cornerstone of any jazz collection. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

In other words: A masterpiece of jazz, a masterpiece of music ! One of the most important albums from the last century !

MilesDavis04

Personnel:
Julian “Cannonball” Adderley (saxophone)
Paul Chambers (bass)
Jimmy Cobb (drums)
John Coltrane (saxophone)
Miles Davis (trumpet)
Bill Evans (piano)
+
Wynton Kelly — piano (on 02.)

OriginalBackCover1
Tracklist:
01. So What (Davis) 9.04
02. Freddie Freeloader (Davis) 9.34
03. Blue In Green (Davis/Evans) 5.27
04. All Blues (Davis) 11.33
05. Flamenco Sketches (Davis/Evans) 9.26
+
06. Flamenco Sketches (alternate take) (Davis/Evans) 9.34
07. Freddie Freeloader (studio sequence 1) (Davis) 0.53
08. Freddie Freeloader (false start) (Davis) 1.27
09. Freddie Freeloader (studio sequence 2) (Davis) 1.30
10. So What (studio sequence 1) (Davis) 1.55
11. So What (studio sequence 2) (Davis) 0.13
12. Blue In Green (studio sequence) (Davis/Evans) 1.58
13. Flamenco Sketches (studio sequence 1) (Davis/Evans) 0.45
14. Flamenco Sketches (studio sequence 2) (Davis/Evans) 1.12
15. All Blues (studio sequence) (Davis) 0.18
16. On Green Dolphin Street (Kaper/Washington) 9.50
17. Fran-Dance (Davis) 5.49
18. Stella By Starlight (Young/Washington) 4.46
19. Love For Sale (Porter)  11.49
20. Fran-Dance (alternate take) (Davis) 5.53
21. So What (recorded at Kurhaus, The Hague, April 9, 1960) (Davis) 17.29

 

LabelB1

*
**

Inlay1