Wonderful Tunes Provided By Friends. Wild Tangents Provided By Me.

Posts tagged ‘Footprints’

Miles Davis: Not Free But Aged Like A Fine Wine

This is a clip from a concert in Sweden in October 1967. This show and another concert taped in November in Germany were combined to make an album called “Winter in Europe 1967” which was released in 2006. Technically October and November are not winter but I tend to call November “winter” anyway because it’s usually cold enough to count in my book.

The jazz here sounds pretty dang free to me but people on You Tube who seem to know what they’re talking about say the song “Footprints” is actually not free jazz. It’s a 12 bar minor blues. The quintet is simply “playing outside” and leaving the common path of harmonic structure. To that I reply: Blue is my favorite color. There were two versions of the song on the album but this one was not featured. Apparently it’s an outtake. I wish my bloopers sounded this good! I listened to a bit of the album version of this song and it does sound more harmonically structured… I guess. I do know that initially Miles was not a fan of free jazz. I remember reading Miles’ quoted response when he heard what Coltrane was doing but I couldn’t find it again. It was something along the lines of “Are you jiving me?” Whether it’s free or not, it’s still good music.

Nineteen sixty-seven was a very good year.  It wasn’t such a great year for John Coltrane, Jayne Mansfield, or Bert Lahr because they all passed away. It was a great year for Will Ferrell, Pamela Anderson, Julia Roberts, and yours truly because we were all born. I sometimes quip about getting older. The passage of time is now evident in the lines around my mouth and the gnarly Bride of Frankenstein streaks in my hair. The other day, for the first time, I even caught myself holding a package at arms length to try to read the fine print. But honestly, I love the woman that 43 years of living has made me! I am far from ready for my dotage at this point but rest assured, when the time comes, I will make a fabulous little old lady!

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