Selection: Sweet Pea (Shorter) – 1967 quintet: somnambulant floating groove, immersive, pensive, no-bop.
Side 1: Miles Davis (trumpet) Wayne Shorter (tenor saxophone) Herbie Hancock (piano) Ron Carter (bass) Tony Williams (drums) recorded Columbia 30th Street Studios, NYC, June 7,13 and 23, 1967
Side 2: Miles Davis (trumpet) Wayne Shorter (tenor saxophone) Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock (electric piano) Dave Holland (bass) Tony Williams (drums) recorded Columbia Studio B, NYC, November 11-12, 1968, recording engineer Stan Tonkel.
Water Babies condemned by Allmusic
” not an essential set, this album fills in some gaps during Davis’s transitional period from adventurous acoustic playing to early electric performances”
Fills some gaps? Sorry, Scott Yanow – users bumped it up an extra star, perhaps a little more appreciated than you thought. Still, he’s not the only one making mistakes.
A record I had mistakenly avoided. Released in 1976 I thought it sat in Miles electric period of which I am not a fan, on a skinny no-eye Columbia Columbia red label, which I also mistakenly avoid. Wrong again, on all counts LJC. What a dunce. Still, there are worse things than looking stupid in front of 500 daily visitors (though none come to mind immediately)
The Water Babies are in fact orphans, titles left behind from ten years previously, between 1967 two weeks before the Nefertiti sessions and Miles transitional period leading up to In a Silent Way (late 1968-9). You all know this, of course, but I didn’t. So it is a bridge between old and new Miles Davis, released ten years after it was recorded, with Chick Corea and electric piano making a first appearance on a couple of tracks, I read somewhere Hancock says he was not present as stated in the credits to the Corea session, and John McLaughlin not yet present still waiting for his airplane ticket to the States. Phew, that was a close call.
Hey LJC, what’s all this dissing John McLaughlin? Look, according to the marketing geniuses, everyone my age is supposed to want to go back to the music they listened to of their youth, when they used to have hair, like it says in the Google Play ads? I got nine McLaughlin albums in my loft, that’s what I used to listened to in my youth. Now, I can’t bear him and I have still got all my hair – just no moustache. So much for the marketing geniuses.
As usual, the geniuses of the marketing industry, of course in their thirties and forties, are mocking their dad, unconsciously projecting the loss of their own youth. I got over mine decades ago.
Illustration by Corky McCoy, who clearly found favour with Miles (once Miles had ran out of wives to put on his covers). Its all very funky street hustle big hair At The Car Wash style, not much to do with this music. I really don’t know what they were thinking of on “Big Fun”. Naked women on record covers? Who’d have thought it..
Vinyl: C 34395 – 1976 1st US issue (no barcode on the cover) – 112 gram vinyl. Goldmine and Discogs list a PC 34396, and not C 34396.
The red label no-eye Columbia Columbia is a conundrum. These recordings still sound fresh to me, in part recorded at the magical 30th St Columbia Studios, tape that was less than ten years old on transfer to vinyl. They are on a later Columbia label I avoid, unless you have no choice, as in this case. Yet defying expectation, they sound great, despite an anorexic 112 gm vinyl weight. What gives?
What gives, I think, is that the Columbia no-eye label had a very long run, 1970’s right through to late eighties, maybe longer. There were all sorts of crucial technology changes during the long life of the label, including less than stellar eighties reissues. Not all record under this red label are equal. Remember, all generalisations are dangerous, including this one.
Source: North London store, again. Hi guys.
Its been a bad week on Ebay again, nothing sensible wins, new collectors starting out throwing money at building a collection fast, dealers throwing money at anything they think they can resell for more. I know I am on the right wavelength when I am 2nd placed price setter. I knew things were going wrong on one auction when even I beat notorious TokyoJazzCollector, Disc Union, only to find myself beaten by a newbie.
A nice mixed score in a shop actually helped me feel much better, with four interesting records going home in the bag for a quarter of one failed bid on Ebay.
While the music industry declares every physical media format dead, replaced by the compressed and limited dynamic range MP3 for mobile devices, there is real quality sounding music on vinyl. Unfortunately, more people seem to be waking up to it. With little interested in “modern” pop music I knew nothing of the “loudness wars” until trying to understand more about “limiting”, as practiced by sound engineers, I came across this very short explanatory Youtube that enabled me in a flash to understand how music was being crippled to make it louder. I just thought it was just crap anyway, but no, music reproduction quality is deliberately going backwards.
Never mind the poor Evil Silver Disk, I feel almost sorry for it (I said almost, not actually) Something much more evil has been afoot that I wasn’t aware of. I’d get angry about it too (except it doesn’t really affect me, I think).
It’s those marketing geniuses again. They have a lot to answer for.