Sixty years ago, the great Miles Davis walked across the stage at the second Newport Jazz Festival, placed the bell of his trumpet right up against the microphone and delivered a solo that stole the show and earned him a deal with Columbia Records.
Festival co-founder, and Newton native, George Wein recalled how Davis "destroyed the audience" with his rendition of Thelonius Monk's "'Round Midnight."
Wein also examined the evolution of Davis' musical style through a new collection of Davis' performances at the festival and festival-related events, which includes nearly four hours of previously unreleased recordings, called "Miles Davis at Newport 1955-1975: The Bootleg Series Vol. 4."
George Wein, jazz pianist and festival organizer, co-founder of the Newport Jazz Festival.
- "What is jazz? What is its place in the world's arts spectrum? The complexities of the music never seem to fully unfold. All we know is that jazz has become a part of our cultural lifestyle."
- Miles Davis’ 20-year association as an artist at impresario George Wein’s renowned Newport Jazz Festival is a thriving tradition celebrated with the release of "Miles Davis at Newport 1955-1975: The Bootleg Series Vol. 4," released 60 years to the date since Davis’ breakthrough performance at Newport in 1955.
- "(H)istory remembers this particular Miles band as state-of-the-art, and it earned that reputation by pushing at every boundary it could find."
- "Each of the sets, really, begins with a new burst of energy as if Davis is announcing an artistic rebirth from the first number. In all but the last set, his trumpet playing takes on a ferocious power, not only matching the vitality of the new members, but leading them forward."
This segment aired on July 31, 2015.