The Jazz Show Episode December 21, 2009

Broadcast on 21-Dec-2009

9:00pm - 12:00am

This truly classic date was recorded on Christmas Eve 1954 and somehow, although not intended has a distinctive "Christmasy" feel to it. The date was really put together by the owner of Prestige Records, Robert (Bob) Weinstock. He had two best sellers under contract, Miles Davis and The Modern Jazz Quartet. He approached Miles Davis about the date and Miles was excited and pleased and expected to record with Milt Jackson, Percy Heath and Kenny Clarke and perhaps his close friend, John Lewis on piano, all members of the MJQ. If not Lewis, perhaps Horace Silver, another favorite of Miles. Weinstock threw a curve at Miles and said, Jackson, Heath and Clarke are on but the pianist will be Thelonious Monk. Weinstock asserted that he needed Monk to perform and record with some of the "best sellers". Miles was not pleased but Weinstock said either Monk or no date. After a long uncomfortable silence between Weinstock and Davis....Miles agreed to the date, He needed the money and liked all the other players. He liked and respected Monk as well but didn't enjoy playing with him but figured he could get around this in a musical way. The date came off beautifully despite the tension between the two men and Monk compromised by not accompanying Davis during his solos except for one tune which was Monk's. The tunes are "Bags' Groove", a blues by Jackson, "Bemsha Swing" by Monk,"Swing Spring" by Davis and the Gershwin's "The Man I Love". plus two alternates of Bags' Groove and The Man I Love. This session was how these gentlemen felt at the time and they had no idea that this date would become one of the bellwethers of Modern Jazz but it has and will remain a classic forever.

Track Listing:

One of Another Kind
Freddie Hubbard · Rollin'
Breaking Point
Winter Wonderland
Chet Baker · Quartet
We Free Kings
Rahsaan Roland Kirk · We Free Kings
Big Foot.
Harold Land · The Cellar 1958
Joe Magnarelli · Persistence
You and The Night and
The Music
Seamus Blake · Bellwether
Bags' groove
Miles Davis · Miles Davis All-Stars
Bemsha Swing
Swing Spring
The Man I Love
Bags' Groove Take2
The Man I Love Take2