Various Artists

The Jazz Giants Play Miles Davis: Milestones

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This entry in the Jazz Giants series finds a host of the genre's biggest names interpreting a batch of Miles Davis tunes with nice results. With scant few exceptions, most everything from the song list comes from the bluesy side of the Davis catalog, kicking off with a reflective, highly swinging take on "Vierd Blues" with nice solos from Oscar Peterson and Joe Pass. Dexter Gordon brings back a tune from bop's 1940s heyday, an alternate take of "Milestones," a track that also features nice work from Freddie Hubbard doubling on trumpet and flugelhorn. Sonny Stitt and Grant Green add fireworks to "Tune Up," Bill Evans turns in a sprawling version of "So What," and Chet Baker contributes an atmospheric take on Davis' "Solar."

Keeping true to the sobriquet "jazz giants," this collection features stellar performances from Wes Montgomery, Hampton Hawes, Shelly Manne, Ray Brown, Don Ellis, Eric Dolphy, Phineas Newborn Jr., Ray Bryant, Philly Joe Jones, and Ron Affif, along with two tracks featuring Davis himself in the company of Charlie Parker (in a rare appearance on tenor sax): "Compulsion" and "The Serpent's Tooth." Like the other entries in this series, this is top-flight jazz played by the best, honoring one of the true trailblazers of the music -- a winning combination every note of the way.

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