- Released: March 15, 2005
- Originally Released: 2008
- Label: Sbme Special Mkts.
- 2.Autumn Leaves
- 3.So What
- 4.Stella By Starlight
- 6.Go-Go (Theme And Announcement)
Personnel: Miles Davis (trumpet); Miles Davis; Ron Carter (bass instrument); Tony Ruption Williams , Tony Williams (drums); Wayne Shorter (tenor saxophone); Herbie Hancock (piano).
Liner Note Author: Michelle Mercer.
Recording information: The Berlin Philharmonie, Berlin, Germany (09/25/1964).
Photographers: Vernon Smith; Ruby Wolpert; Francis Wolff; Jan Persson.
MILES IN BERLIN, recorded in September of 1964, is the first recording trumpeter Miles Davis made with what would be regarded as his "second great quintet." Though Davis had been working with pianist Herbie Hancock, bassist Ron Carter, and drummer Tony Williams for about a year, the addition of tenor saxophonist Wayne Shorter was the perfect last piece of the puzzle. Shorter built on John Coltrane's innovations from the 1950s, but also brought an abstract, impressionistic sensibility and a sensitivity to the group's unique dynamics. The chemistry worked perfectly, and it is hard to believe--given the rapport the musicians have here--that they had been playing together only a month.
The set features gems that had been part of Davis's repertoire since the mid-'50s, including "Autumn Leaves" and the bop staple "Walkin'," yet the quintet's interpretations leave them virtually unrecognizable. Tempos are quickened to a breathless pace, complex cross-rhythms clatter, and solos spin out into the abstract on furious bebop excursions (a racing "Milestones") and gorgeously colored impressionistic ballads ("Stella by Starlight"). This is a landmark recording, both for its historical importance (this ensemble would make some of the most revered albums in jazz), and its stunning music.