Columbia/Legacy are releasing the latest Miles Davis box set on 17 July when they issue Miles Davis At Newport 1955-1975: The Bootleg Series Vol.4 which will contain nearly four hours of previously unreleased music. This four-CD set covers all Davis’ groundbreaking bands that redefined the future direction of jazz, caught live at George Wein’s legendary Newport Jazz Festival.

It includes his first ever appearance at Newport, Rhode Island in 1955 in an all star jam with Thelonious Monk, Gerry Mulligan and others; his Kind Of Blue band from 1958; the second classic quintet at the 1966 and 67 Newport Festivals; the first electric outing with the In A Silent Way musicians at Newport in 1969; the Bitches Brew band at the Newport Jazz Festival in Europe date in Switzerland 1971; the widescreen psychedelic modal funk of the Agharta band from the Newport In Europe date in Berlin 1973 and his final show in 1975 from a Newport event at Avery Fisher Hall in New York before his mid 1970s lay-off.

The original concerts were produced by George Wein and this box set is produced by Richard Seidel and Michael Cuscuna with co-producer Steve Berkowitz, the Grammy award winning team responsible for previous Bootleg Series sets. The 4 CD set runs to 296 minutes playing time, including almost 4 hours of previously unreleased tracks, and will be released exactly 60 years after Davis first played the Newport Festival on 17 July 1955. Miles Davis will be celebrated at this year’s Newport Festival from 31 July-2 August with a number of panels, events and performances that will be presided over by George Wein.

– Jon Newey

Today is the fouth UNESCO World Jazz Day, and to mark this now-global event a special concert entitled Ode to the Human Spirit, featuring The Human Revolution Orchestra with guest trombonist Robin Eubanks, is set to take place at the Union Chapel, London. Net proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

Originally initiated in 2012 by legendary pianist and well-known Buddhist Herbie Hancock, the day seeks to celebrate jazz as a symbol of unity and peace. The Human Revolution Orchestra, which aims to symbolise positive change through respectful and spontaneous collaboration, features US trombonist (and fellow Buddhist) Robin Eubanks, whose CV includes work as key contributor to the Dave Holland Quintet/Big Band.

The Human Revolution Orchestra features leading players from across the British jazz scene including trumpeters Noel Langley, Sean Corby, Yazz Ahmed, John Eacott, Byron Wallen and Becca Toft; trombonists Richard Henry, Richard Edwards, Nathaniel Cross, Jonny Enright, Harry Brown and Ed Eieband; saxophonists Tony Kofi, Nadim Teimoori, Martin Speake, Gemma Moore, Dai Pritchard and Christian Brewer, vocalist Jason Singh, pianist Simon Purcell, drummer Rod Youngs, singer Randolph Matthews, pianist/singer Lianne Carroll, bassist Larry Bartley, percussionists Neville Murray, Graeme Evelyn, David Pattman and Cosimo Keita Cadore, bassist Dermot McNeil and guitarist Carl Orr.

– Mike Flynn


For more info and tickets go to www.unionchapel.org.uk

The lauded Mexican drummer and composer Antonio Sanchez, best known for his work with Pat Metheny, brings his Migration quartet to London for an exclusive concert at the Odeon cinema in Leicester Square, 1 May. The gig will preview music from his upcoming album, The Meridian Line, followed by a special showing of the Oscar-winning film, Birdman, for which Sanchez created the acclaimed drums-led soundtrack.

The Meridian Line is officially released on the 9 June, (Cam/Sunnyside records), so this is a rare opportunity to hear what Sanchez calls, “the most ambitious project I’ve ever put together”, before general release. For what is his fifth outing as a leader, Sanchez has composed an hour-long suite for a small jazz combo. Each section segues into the next and according to Sanchez “attempts to portray my vision of how these imaginary lines [Meridian lines] flow through us, guide us and influence us in the most subtle and profound ways.”

Besides Sanchez himself, the Migration quartet comprises three of New York’s finest resident players: The British, Doncaster-born pianist John Escreet; Sanchez’ fellow Berklee graduate Seamus Blake on tenor saxophone and EWI, and the consistently creative Matt Brewer on bass.

– Marlowe Heywood-Thornes

For more info go to: www.odeon.co.uk

button-band

London’s guitar-led quartet The Button Band is set to start a UK tour of 12 venues in May, including an official launch gig of their eponymous debut at Pizza Express Jazz Club, Soho, London on Sunday 24 May. Despite the hard times suffered by the arts sector in recent years, The Button Band have been awarded Arts Council funding for their UK tour.

This quartet of in-demand young players was founded in 2012 by inventive guitarist Andy Button, alongside Andy Woolf on tenor sax, Dave Manington on bass and Jon Ormaston on drums. Between them they have worked with such luminaries as Gwilym Simcock, Kenny Wheeler, Mark Lockheart, Mark Anthony Turnage and Martin Speake.

All four members make regular appearances on the London jazz scene and the band featured in last year’s prestigious London Jazz Festival. The group blends melodic content with sophisticated forms and incorporates elements of various genres like country, blues and South-African township jazz, thus showing influences from the likes of Bill Frisell and Loose Tubes.

– Marlowe Heywood-Thornes

For more info go to www.andrewbuttonguitar.co.uk/dates/

Rising British jazz star Anthony Strong releases a preview track from his upcoming album On A Clear Day, which hits the shelves on Monday 18 May. This is followed by an album launch gig at Ronnie Scott’s in Soho, London on Sunday 24 May. The new track, a cover of Stevie Wonder’s ‘Higher Ground’, exemplifies the charismatic vocals and tight arrangements that audiences can expect from Strong’s fourth album, which makes use of a full big band plus rhythm section.

On A Clear Day comprises a selection of jazz standards mixed in with some classic pop tunes, all arranged and orchestrated by Strong himself. The core rhythm section is made up of Strong on piano, Jamie Cullum sideman
Sebastiaan De Krom on drums and Empirical’s Tom Farmer on bass. Strong returns to London after a European tour for two more dates at Pizza Express Jazz Club on 22-23 July.

For more info go to onaclearday.international/product/on-a-clear-day/

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