The Original Mono Recordings

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Miles Davis - The Original Mono Recordings (2013) [9CD BoxSet] {Columbia}

For nearly half a century, Miles Davis (1926-1991) was arguably the preeminent innovator in jazz - rarely staying in the same place twice, experimenting with the most cutting-edge styles and ideas he could imagine. This year, some of Miles' most enduring works for Columbia Records are collected the way they were originally heard: MILES DAVIS: THE ORIGINAL MONO RECORDINGS. Each CD, newly remastered by Mark Wilder at Battery Studios, is housed in a mini-LP replica jacket, faithfully replicating the original LP sleeves. They are encased in a quality slipcase, alongside a 40-page booklet with rare photos and brand-new essay offering in-depth, first-hand accounts from George Avakian, who signed Miles to Columbia in 1955, AND play-by-play from mastering engineer Mark Wilder. This is the true genius of Miles Davis as most people first heard it, the way it was intended to be heard: in mono.
The 2013 box set The Original Mono Recordings, brings together all nine of the albums the legendary jazz trumpeter recorded for Columbia that were originally released in mono, including 1957's 'Round About Midnight, 1957's Miles Ahead, 1958's Milestones, 1959's Jazz Track, 1959's Porgy and Bess, 1959's Kind of Blue, 1960's Sketches of Spain, 1961's Someday My Prince Will Come, and 1964's Miles & Monk at Newport. Remastered using the original master tapes and with pristine versions of the LPs as comparative benchmarks for sound, these mono versions have a warmth and immediacy that, at the very least, match the stereo versions, and to some ears may even outdo them. Prior to 1959, all of Davis' recordings for Columbia were released in mono. Which means that, although stereo became a popular format during the '60s, most listeners first heard these landmark albums in mono. In fact, mono was considered the most faithful and purest representation of how the music sounded in the studio. There is some logic to this notion, as the aim was to present the music in the truest regard to the overall sound of the band in the studio. Subsequently, there is less post-production trickery involved on the mono versions. There is also a clarity and depth to the sound quality on these albums, especially when it comes to the piano and bass, that stands apart from previous stereo versions. It's as if you can see farther into the recording, revealing a fuller aural picture of the band as a whole. For some listeners this may not matter, but ultimately, for others, it will mean that these mono remasters, whether bought individually or as a part of this box set, will be must-have additions to their collections.
From the start of the Miles Davis-Columbia relationship, enormous care was taken to record his albums, and no expense was spared to promote the results. The producers and engineers who toiled on Miles' albums between 1955 and 1963 considered mono truer to the original sound and original intent, even after the advent of stereo in 1958.

Miles Davis: The Original Mono Recordings offers Miles' nine earliest Columbia albums remastered and complete in one package - all in impeccable mono mixes for the first time on CD. Seven of these albums - 'Round About Midnight, Miles Ahead (both 1957), Milestones (1958), Porgy And Bess, Kind Of Blue (both 1959), Sketches Of Spain (1960) and Someday My Prince Will Come (1961) - are familiar classics which saw Miles rise to prominence as an architect of the "hard bop" style of jazz before revolutionizing the genre with ventures into modal jazz. Of these, Milestones and Kind Of Blue remain among the most universally recognized jazz recordings in the world.

Miles Davis: The Original Mono Recordings also includes two exciting rare albums: 1958's Jazz Track features 10 compositions recorded for a French film, L'Ascenseuer pour l'echafaud, and three selections from an acclaimed session recorded shortly after the release of Milestones (and a prelude to Kind Of Blue - starring Davis, John Coltrane, Cannonball Adderley, Bill Evans, Paul Chambers, and Jimmy Cobb - offering the only other studio sides we have by Davis's sextet before they would record what became the best-selling jazz album of all time). Miles & Monk At Newport, released in 1964, features selections from two separate live performances at the Newport Jazz Festival: Davis' leading the same sextet from Jazz Track in 1958, and a 1963 set from pianist Thelonious Monk, just recently signed to Columbia from the Riverside label.

• 9 CD Box Set
• Miles Davis' First 9 Albums for Columbia Records in One Package
• First Time on CD the Way They Were Meant to be Heard: in MONO
• Each CD Newly Remastered & Housed in Mini-LP Replica Jacket
• Each CD Encased in Quality Slipcase
• 40-Page Booklet with Rare Photos & Brand New Essay


Disc 1 - 'Round About Midnight
01. 'Round About Midnight
02. Ah-Leu-Cha
03. All of You
04. Bye Bye Blackbird
05. Tadd's Delight
06. Dear Old Stockholm

Disc 2 - Miles Ahead
01. Springsville
02. The Maids of Cadiz
03. The Duke
04. My Ship
05. Miles Ahead
06. Blues for Pablo
07. New Rhumba
08. The Meaning of the Blues
09. Lament
10. I Don't Wanna Be Kissed (By Anybone but You)

Disc 3 - Milestones
01. Dr. Jekyll
02. Sid's Ahead
03. Two Bass Hit
04. Miles
05. Billy Boy
06. Straight, No Chaser

Disc 4 - Jazz Tack
01. Generique
02. L'assassinat de Carala
03. Sur l'autoroute
04. Julien dans l'ascenseur
05. Florence sur les Champs-Elysees
06. Diner au motel
07. Evasion de Julien
08. Visite du vigile
09. Au bar du Petit-Bac
10. Chez le photographe du motel
11. On Green Dolphin Street
12. Fran-Dance
13. Stella by Starlight

Disc 5 - Porgy and Bess
01. The Buzzard Song
02. Bess You Is My Woman
03. Gone
04. Gone, Gone, Gone
05. Summertime
06. Bess, Oh Where's My Bess
07. Prayer (Oh, Doctor Jesus)
08. Fishermen, Strawberry and Devil Crab
09. My Man's Gone Now
10. It Ain't Necessarily So
11. Here Come de Honey Man
12. I Loves You, Porgy
13. There's a Boat That's Leaving Soon for New York

Disc 6 - Kind of Blue
01. So What
02. Freddie Freeloader
03. Blue in Green
04. All Blues
05. Flamenco Sketches

Disc 7 - Sketches of Spain
01. Concierto de Aranjuez
02. Will o' the Wisp
03. The Pan Piper
04. Saeta
05. Solea

Disc 8 - Someday My Prince Will Come
01. Someday My Prince Will Come
02. Old Folks
03. Pfrancing
04. Drad-Dog
05. Teo
06. I Thought About You

Disc 9 - Miles & Monk at Newport
The Miles Davis Sextet
01. Ah-Leu-Cha
02. Straight, No Chaser
03. Fran-Dance
04. Two Bass Hit
The Thelonious Monk Quartet
05. Nutty
06. Blue Monk