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Rooster_Ties

Sax players with Miles after Shorter (70's only)

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70's only -- after Shorter

I've been listening to some 70's Miles recently (Cellar Door, (hopefully, yet) here we come!!), and got to thinking about the sax players with Miles in the 70's (after Shorter).

At one time, I used to remember almost all of them, and the order in which they came and went, and what saxes they played with Miles. (But my memory of such things went away some time ago.) Here's what I've been able to piece together, through some quickie Internet searches...

Gary Bartz, Sonny Fortune, Carlos Garnett, Steve Grossman, Dave Liebman, Azar Lawrence, Sam Morrison, and John Stubblefield. (Might as well also list Bennie Maupin too, though he never did play sax with Miles - is that right??)

  • Is there anybody else I'm forgetting??
  • What is the order in which they came and went in the live bands??
  • Which ones only played on Studio recordings, and never joined Miles' live bands??
  • Also, which ones played tenor with Miles?? (Particularly in the live bands.)
  • Did anybody NOT double on soprano?? (Again, primarily a "live-band" question)

Also -- who are your favorites, and least favorites?? -- and why??

Edited by Rooster_Ties

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Tom - do you know this book? I think it pretty much nails what you might be looking for.

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Tom - do you know this book?  I think it pretty much nails what you might be looking for.

Yeah, I've got it. (GREAT book!!) Just can't find it at the moment. :ph34r:

Had it out a couple months ago to look something up, and don't know where it got to (it's around here somewhere).

Edited by Rooster_Ties

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Bartz and Liebman are my favorites. . . must say. And on those rare occasions when there was tenor from Lieberman or Grossman (apparently often edited out of any official release) to be heard it was really nice!

Bartz was my favorite soprano saxohponist of the batch.

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Sam Morrison is the name in the list that's entirely unfamiliar to me. Doing a search on Miles Ahead, seems to indicate that he only played with Miles for a couple months in mid-1975 (right before Miles stopped playing). Only a handful of live dates, and even fewer studio ones. (None ever released, at least not legit.)

Has anybody here heard any of the Miles material with Sam Morrison?? What's his story?? Any other non-Miles recordings of his worth mentioning (either as a leader, or sideman).

(Damn, I gotta find that book. :ph34r: )

Edited by Rooster_Ties

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And on those rare occasions when there was tenor from Lieberman.....

64167.jpg

Well, he's no Bill Clinton......

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Sorry, spelling got me there.

I have heard Morrison on studio stuff from 1976. . .(Unknown Sessions Vol. 2 I think) the music was moving towards the song structure that came after the retirement. . . Morrison did okay, but really didn't make an impression on my memory!

Edited by jazzbo

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Never liked Lieberman's tenor either..nor his disposition :P

Edited by rostasi

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Not sure, but I thought Rick Margitza might have played with Miles at some time.

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Not sure, but I thought Rick Margitza might have played with Miles at some time.

Certainly did, but that was much later -- circa 1988-89.

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OK, quickie searches on Miles Ahead yields the following times that Miles' 70's sax players were with him (in terms of recorded evidence)...

Steve Grossman from Nov 69 to Jul 70 (live and studio)

Gary Bartz from Aug 70 to Nov 71 (live and studio)

Carols Garnett from Jun 72 to Dec 72 (mostly studio, couple live dates)

Date Liebman from Jun 72 to Jun 74 (live and studio)

John Stubblefield only one date (studio) in Sep 73

Azar Lawrence only one date (live) in Mar 74

Sonny Fortune from July 74 to Mar 75 (live and studio)

Sam Morrison from May 75 to Mar 76 (live and studio - nothing released commercially)

Is there anybody else I'm missing??

Edit: To fix "Gart Bartz". :P

Edited by Rooster_Ties

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OK, quickie searches on Miles Ahead yields the following times that Miles' 70's sax players were with him (in terms of recorded evidence)...

Steve Grossman from Nov 69 to Jul 70 (live and studio)

Gart Bartz from Aug 70 to Nov 71 (live and studio)

Carols Garnett from Jun 72 to Dec 72 (mostly studio, couple live dates)

Date Liebman from Jun 72 to Jun 74 (live and studio)

John Stubblefield only one date (studio) in Sep 73

Azar Lawrence only one date (live) in Mar 74

Sonny Fortune from July 74 to Mar 75 (live and studio)

Sam Morrison from May 75 to Mar 76 (live and studio - nothing released commercially)

Is there anybody else I'm missing??

Believe it is Garth Bartz ... :P

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OK, quickie searches on Miles Ahead yields the following times that Miles' 70's sax players were with him (in terms of recorded evidence)...

Steve Grossman from Nov 69 to Jul 70 (live and studio)

Grossman was a member of Miles's live group from March or April of 1970 though he "auditioned" on some earlier studio sessions.

Gary Bartz from Aug 70 to Nov 71 (live and studio)

According to Tingen, Miles reconvened the Cellar Door band briefly in the spring of 1972. Presumably Gary would have been part of this group.

Date Liebman from Jun 72 to Jun 74 (live and studio)

Dave was a member of Miles's from '73 onward.

As far as Lon's comments about Grossman -- I remember finally hearing one of his rare tenor solos with Miles and thinking, "Wow, this is a much better guy than the soprano saxophonist!"

Guy

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Not sure, but I thought Rick Margitza might have played with Miles at some time.

Certainly did, but that was much later -- circa 1988-89.

Oops - didn't see 70's only.

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Looks like Sam Morrison had a release on East Wind (then reissued on Inner City a couple years later), in the mid-to-late 70's -- called "Dune". Audio clips can be found HERE on this Allmusic page. Nothing too amazing (nor too bad -- for the time), though his tenor tone on the sample from track #2 makes me want to hear more of him (on tenor, at least).

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Sonny Fortune played alto & soprano, no tenor at all.

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And flute, as did Liebman.

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As far as favorites in Miles's 70s bands, I probably have to go with Gary, followed by Dave and then Sonny in a somewhat distant 3rd.

Guy

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Sorry, but for me it's Sonny all the way. He broght a "scorched earth" style of playing that restored the yin/yang of the Davis/Trane & Davis/Shorter dynamic.

Bartz comes in second for me. A very "vocal" player with Miles, and an effective color/voice, even if his vocabulary seemed a bit fixed.

Liebman & Grossman? Fine players both, but they both seemed to be spending as much time chasing the Trane as they were playing the music at hand. Different tasks, those.

Azar Lawrence was a "walk on" for the Black Magus concert, supposedly w/o anybody else being prepared for it (especially Liebman!).

Carlos Garnett? Good player, but essentially faceless in this music.

The Sam Morrison w/Miles that I've heard (studio and live) makes the choice of Bill Evans for the "comeback" band seem a logical continuation.

I wonder how Rene McLean would've sounded in a 70s Miles band...

Truthfully, the best (by which I mean "my favorite") post-Wayne sax player that Miles had was by far and away Kenny Garrett. I kid you not.

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Garrett played pretty well with Miles, but the never ending mimicking trades with their foreheads touching wasn't interesting even the first time. When I saw them I was wishing for Bob Berg again.

Mike

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I grew to like Garrett quite a bit when I went through my "get everything Miles ever did" phase back in college (late 80's / early 90's for me). His playing was always good (never less than good), and his tone was always identifiable as his.

I remember what a surprise it was hearing him (Garrett) play on the Miles & Quincy Jones thing (all the Gil Evans charts) -- not that I was surprised to hear him playing that kind of material. But, rather, it was such a lovely surprise how much I enjoyed hearing him (his tone, and brand of soloing) in that context. Even him just playing the heads (Boplicity in particular), was a joy (or so I remembered thinking at the time).

Edited by Rooster_Ties

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i was reading somewhere that miles saw sam morrison play at a club and was so impressed that he immediately booted sonny fortune from the band for morrison. i am shocked to hear this as i really like what fortune brought to the miles band.

i would say fortune was my favorite and then bartz. i love in the 1971 band when bartz would just step up and break it down. mike henderson would throw on that flanged bass sound (i think it is a flanger) and the rhythm would slow down and bartz would just tear it up slow.

liebman and grossman do nothing for me.

i have morrison's "dune" album. i enjoy albums like this-i mean it has al foster and buster williams in the rhythm section and ryo kawasaki on guitar so i find it interesting. its deeper than you might think for 1976 though not a must have or anything. i like electric not too-commercial jazz so this album is spot on for me. one song is dedicated to miles i presume (it is called "miles away" or something like that with miles in the title).

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Sam Morrison has a new CD titled 'Miles Away'. Check it out on CDBABY. His East Wind recording 'Dune' from the 70s was recently re-released on a beautifully DSD remastered Japanese release and it is still in print. Sam is living now in the Catskills and plays occasionally in NYC, the Berkshires and upstate NY.

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Sam Morrison has a new CD titled 'Miles Away'. Check it out on CDBABY. His East Wind recording 'Dune' from the 70s was recently re-released on a beautifully DSD remastered Japanese release and it is still in print. Sam is living now in the Catskills and plays occasionally in NYC, the Berkshires and upstate NY.

WARNING: off topic:

Welcome U47. What's the origin of your name?

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Yes, please tell. And speak clearly!

u47.jpg

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