Thursday, May 26, 2016

Miles Davis & Raymond Scott

Miles Davis was born on this date in 1926. Although there's no indication that Davis met Raymond Scott, it appears he may have been a fan. About 4 years-ago, I found a Miles Davis 'Blindfold Test' from 1968 — listening to Sun Ra (a tune titled "Brainville"), Davis said: "That's gotta come from Europe. We wouldn't play no shit like that. It's so sad. It sounds funny to me. Sounds like a 1935 arrangement by Raymond Scott. You mean there's somebody around here that feels like that? Even the white people don't feel that sad."
I've discovered another Davis 'Blindfold Test,' this one from 10 years earlier, in which he also mentions Raymond Scott. Here is a brief audio clip I excerpted from the complete 35-minute recording (and I transcribed it because Davis can be difficult to understand):
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
1958 “Blindfold Test” (excerpt)
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
MILES DAVIS: Well, now it’s sickening because everybody plays the cliches that they played 5 years ago.
LEONARD FEATHER: Hmm, or 10 years ago.
MD: And them ‘modren’ (sic) musicians. I really can’t stand to hear too many of those guys now — very few.
LF: What do you think about the West Coast guys?
MD: They can have that. They got all of that… on the West Coast.
LF: Do you think it lacks emotion?
MD: Yes, I think it’s the heat out there. (both laugh) And the movies. I really don’t understand that. You know, I like [jazz drummer and bandleader] Chico [Hamilton], he’s a good friend of mine, ya know, but his band makes me sick!
LF: Well, a lot of it is not Jazz.
MD: I don’t know what it is. I’d rather listen to Raymond Scott’s old quintet.
LF: (laughs)

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Anthropophagy Feast

On this date in 1937, Raymond Scott returned to CBS studios with his Quintette for their third session to record "Dinner Music For A Pack Of Hungry Cannibals." It was an immediate hit when it was released 79 years ago, and is immortalized in "Which Is Witch" along with at least 16 other classic LOONEY TUNES. Download the vintage Columbia recording from the iTunes store, or Amazon, and check-out this cover by Kronos Quartet, plus a live performance by Ego Plum. Below is a private rehearsal by the original Quintette, released on the 2-CD "MICROPHONE MUSICcollection from the Basta label:

Monday, May 02, 2016

New Review of Documentary Film: Podcast

New 10-minute podcast segment, reviewing the feature-length documentary film about Raymond Scott's life and work:

"Spotlight on Film: Deconstructing Dad, excerpt of Powerhouse by The Raymond Scott Quintet... Thanks also to Chainsaw Chuck Majewski for the long ago tip to Raymond Scott’s web site."

Begins at 6:45  >>> Click to listen: here