LEGACY EDITION COMMEMORATES MOST IMPORTANT JAZZ ALBUM
At the pinnacle of those forward-thinking artists who challenged the status quo at the close of the buttoned-down, buttoned-up Eisenhower era, and brought us into the clear light of the 1960s – was Miles Davis (1926-1991). In every way, Kind of Blue (recorded and released on Columbia in 1959), starring Miles’ “first great quintet” – Julian ‘Cannonball’ Adderley (1928-1975, alto saxophone), John Coltrane (1926-1967, tenor saxophone), Bill Evans (1929-1980, piano) or Wynton Kelly (1931-1971, piano), Paul Chambers (1935-1969, bass), and Jimmy Cobb (b. 1929, drums, the only surviving member) – was the album that not only changed the private fan’s perception of jazz, but forever changed fellow musicians’ concepts as well.
A half-century later, Kind of Blue continues to inspire new levels of scholarship into its creation, new attempts to explain the album’s allure and influence. Tens of thousands of jazz albums, and at least three generations of jazz players later, the essence of Kind of Blue has never been duplicated. That may account, in part, for its RIAA quadruple-platinum status in the U.S. and worldwide recognition as a timeless masterpiece, #12 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 Greatest Albums Of All Time.
The double-CD package will be available at all physical and digital retail outlets starting January 20, 2009, through Columbia/Legacy, a division of SONY MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT. This Legacy Edition celebrates a masterwork and its prelude, offering the only other studio sides we have by Davis’ sextet, and a later live recording, illustrating how this band evolved and where they were headed on their journey toward immortality.
KIND OF BLUE: LEGACY EDITION comes four months after the September 30, 2008, release of KIND OF BLUE: 50th ANNIVERSARY COLLECTORS EDITION, and provides an affordable alternative to the box set. Among the many contents of that expansive and lavishly-designed 12-inch slipcase box was a 60-page bound book that included exclusive photographs, full discographical annotation, and critical essays written by Miles Davis authorities Francis Davis and Prof. Gerald Early, plus session transcripts by Ashley Kahn.
The newly configured double-CD package will contain a standard CD booklet with a reworked 2,500-word version of the Davis essay, and an embedded .pdf file with an enhanced digital booklet adapted from the box set.
In conjunction with the upcoming 50th anniversary of Kind of Blue in 2009 are two important musical celebrations. The “Kind of Blue @ 50” World Tour starring NEA Jazz Master Jimmy Cobb (who celebrates his 80th birthday on January 20, 2009) & The So What Band – with Cobb, Wallace Roney, Javon Jackson, Vincent Herring, Larry Willis, and Buster Williams – will commence May 2nd at the 40th annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. A trip to Sao Paulo, Brazil will follow in mid-May. The band will then perform at many North American and European Jazz Festivals in June and July, followed by concerts at American performing arts centers in October and November, with further dates to follow in Europe and Asia. The tour is produced and promoted by Absolutely Live/International Music Network (www.imnworld.com).