Coltrane, Adderley, Miles, Evans
An Mp3 from the splendid Speechification of a documentary on Radio 4's Soul Music covering the basic history of the recording of So What, the lead track on Miles Davis' Kind of Blue. Some of the commentary grates a little as it tends to slip into the mawkish at times but there are some great insights. I especially like the idea that this was Miles trying to recreate a childhood memory of the sound of a lone gospel singer he stumbled across in a battered church in the woods outside St Louis. Kind of Blue has an odd status - at times it seems so ubiquitous as to be almost invisible. No matter this is well worth a listen.
There's also a great show over at NPR about the making of Kind of Blue. The download of it is on the left hand side.
This video recording is dated to April 2nd 1959 and features Wynton Kelley on piano in place of Bill Evans and Jimmy Cobb on drums; Julian Adderley was sick and wasn't at the session. There's something in the way the others stand around so relaxed as Coltrane goes off on one of his runs, a sense somewhere between too cool and reverence. There's a weight already about Coltrane, perhaps the gravity of all that was to come. But his future size is there as well, in those immense shoulders and ghosted into the bulbs of his eyes.