Miles Ahead session details

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November 7, 1956 (12 items; TT = 40:32)
Festhalle A, Planten & Blomen, Hamburg (Germany)
NDR radio broadcast (B+)
Birdland All-Stars in Europe

Miles Davis (tpt); Lester Young (ts); René Urtreger (p); Pierre Michelot (b); Christian Garros (d); Earl "Bud" Powell (p)

1 El Sino (G. Ammons) 3:21

René Urtreger Trio
2 Tune Up (M. Davis) 2:58

René Urtreger Trio + Miles Davis
3 Four (M. Davis) 3:38

René Urtreger Trio + Miles Davis
4 Yesterdays (J. Kern-O. Harbach) 4:00

René Urtreger Trio + Miles Davis
5 Walkin' (R. Carpenter) 2:52

René Urtreger Trio + Miles Davis. Davis begins his solo with eight bars of "Bye Bye Blackbird"
6 Three Little Words (H. Ruby-B. Kalmar) 5:25

René Urtreger Trio + Lester Young
7 Lady Be Good (G. Gershwin-I. Gershwin) 6:15

René Urtreger Trio + Lester Young, Miles Davis
8 Autumn in New York (V. Duke) 2:31

Bud Powell solo
9 I Want to Be Happy (V. Youmans-I. Caesar) 2:42

Bud Powell solo
10 Jumpin' with Symphony Sid (L. Young) 2:04

René Urtreger Trio + Lester Young
11 Polka Dots and Moonbeams (J. Burke-J. Van Heusen) 3:52

René Urtreger Trio + Lester Young
12 Lester Leaps In (inc) (L. Young) 0:54

René Urtreger Trio + Lester Young


The "Birdland All-Stars in Europe" tour took place during November 1956; in addition to Davis, the tour featured Lester Young, Bud Powell, The Modern Jazz Quartet, the René Urtreger Trio, and (on some of the German dates) the Kurt Edelhagen Orchestra. The itinerary was as follows:

November 2: Salle Pleyel, Paris
November 3 (evening): Concertgebouw, Haarlem
November 3 (midnight): Concertgebouw, Amsterdam
November 4: Palais de Beaux-Arts, Brussels
November 6: Sportspalast, Berlin
November 7: Hamburg: Festhalle A
November 8: Rosengarten, Mannheim
November 9: Kongresshalle, Frankfurt
November 10: Unknown venue, Hamburg
November 11: Deutsches Museum, Munich
November 12: Stadthalle, Freiburg
November 13: Konserthuset, Stockholm
November 14: KB-Hallen, Copenhagen
November 16: Unknown venue, Lille
November 17: Salle Pleyel, Paris
November 18: Unknown venue, Strasbourg
November 19: Kongresshaus, Zürich
November 20: Victoria Hall, Geneva
November 21: Musikhalle, Basel
November 22: Teatro di via Manzoni, Milan (two concerts, afternoon and evening)
November 23: Teatro Nuovo, Turin (two concerts, afternoon and evening)
November 24: Unknown venue, Marseilles
November 25: Unknown venue, Lyons

After the evening concert on November 22, Davis participated in a jam session in a Milan club, the Taverna Mexico, with Renato Angiolini (p), but Davis apparently did not like his playing and so replaced him with Milt Jackson; the other participants were Alceo Guatelli (b) and an unknown Italian drummer. Thanks to Stefano Biosa for this information.

The few fragments that survive from this tour show Davis in fine form and a very frail Lester Young.

This session was broadcast in 2018 by NDR. Thanks to Olve Strelow for sharing this music with me.

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