Ahead of the Newport Jazz Festival (July 31, August 1 & 2) the MILES DAVIS AT NEWPORT 1955-1975 will be available everywhere on Friday, July 17 (PRNewsFoto/Columbia/Legacy Recordings)
FOUR-CD BOX SET TRACKS MILES’ ASCENDANCE OVER EIGHT LIVE FESTIVAL PERFORMANCES SPANNING 20 YEARS IN NEWPORT, NEW YORK, BERLIN, AND SWITZERLAND; 296-MINUTE PROGRAM INCLUDES NEARLY FOUR HOURS OF PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED MATERIAL
Newport Jazz Festival To Be Held July 31-August 2 Celebrates the Iconic Trumpeter’s Relationship with the Legendary Newport Jazz Festival and Its Revered Founder-Impresario George Wein, Commemorating the 60th Anniversary Of Miles’ Newport Debut With Musical Tributes, Workshops And More
NEW YORK, April 30, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Miles Davis’ 20-year association as an artist at impresario George Wein’s renowned Newport Jazz Festival is a thriving tradition that will be celebrated with the release of MILES DAVIS AT NEWPORT 1955-1975: THE BOOTLEG SERIES VOL. 4. The four-CD box set, comprised of live performances by Miles’ stellar band lineups in 1955, 1958, 1966, 1967, 1969, 1971, 1973, and 1975, in Newport, Rhode Island, New York City, Berlin, and Switzerland, will be the lynchpin for a 60th anniversary commemorative weekend of events at this summer’s annual Newport Jazz Festival (July 31, August 1 & 2). Ahead of the festival, MILES DAVIS AT NEWPORT 1955-1975 will be available everywhere on Friday, July 17 — 60 years to the date since Davis’ breakthrough performance at Newport in 1955 — through Columbia/Legacy Recordings, a division of Sony Music Entertainment. An interview with Newport Jazz Festival founder-impresario, George Wein, discussing his relationship with Miles Davis, can be viewed here : http://vevo.ly/GOueyx. Fans are now able to pre-order the 4-CD set bundled with a poster exclusively from MilesDavis.com (http://smarturl.it/miles_newport_d2c). The set is also available for pre-order on Amazon (http://smarturl.it/miles_newport_amzn).
The newest entry in Columbia/Legacy Recordings’ critically-acclaimed Miles Davis Bootleg Series, NEWPORT 1955-1975 clocks in at 296 minutes, nearly four hours of which is previously unreleased. From Miles’ debut performance at NJF in 1955 (a hastily arranged jam session featuring Thelonious Monk and Gerry Mulligan, that immediately led to the trumpeter’s Columbia signing), to his final public performance of the ’70s in 1975 (at Lincoln Center during NJF-NY, the singular “Mtume” named for Miles’ favored percussionist of that decade), the box set traces the ascendance of Miles’ music as the ne plus ultra of jazz. The full-length concert performances alone of Miles’ famed “Kind Of Blue” Sextet (with Cannonball Adderley, John Coltrane, Bill Evans, Paul Chambers, and Jimmy Cobb), and ‘second great quintet in ’66 and ’67 (with Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Ron Carter, and Tony Williams) represent templates that reverberate in jazz and popular music to this day.
In that spirit, George Wein, who at age 89 still guides the Newport Jazz Festival, will preside over this summer’s Miles-centric gathering, July 31, August 1 & 2. The lineup includes a cadre of bands led by trumpet stars Ambrose Akinmusire, Chris Botti, Peter Evans, Jon Faddis, Tom Harrell, Arturo Sandoval, and Bria Skonberg. In a rare, historic tribute, Botti, Evans, Faddis, Harrell, Sandoval and Skonberg will perform one Miles Davis number during their sets.
The festival weekend will feature a number of exciting panel discussions focusing on Miles Davis, created in conjunction with the Miles Davis Estate and curated by Grammy Award®-winning music historian Ashley Kahn. Highlights include an interview with George Wein conducted by New York Times critic Nate Chinen (co-author of Wein’s autobiography Myself Among Others: A Life In Music); a celebration of Miles and the St. Louis trumpet tradition with excerpts from the Clark Terry documentary Keep On Keepin’ On (produced by Quincy Jones); and a discussion of Miles’s romance with electric guitars. There will also be a playback of music from the new Columbia/Legacy Recordings box set MILES DAVIS AT NEWPORT 1955-1975: THE BOOTLEG SERIES VOL. 4, with co-producer of the collection—Grammy Award®-winning producer Steve Berkowitz and consultant Nell Mulderry—and Miles’s nephew, drummer Vince Wilburn, Jr. Kahn penned the liner notes to this set, noting how Miles’s historic performances at the Newport Jazz Festival never failed to “show the trumpeter repeatedly rising to the occasion, delivering groundbreaking music every time he hit the Newport stage.”
In this symbiosis, George Wein employed Miles to make Newport great, and Miles obliged by bringing some of the post-modern jazz era’s paramount musicians to the festival stage in his bands. The Newport Jazz Festival (and starting in 1959, Wein’s Newport Folk Festival) enabled audiences of 10,000 to dig the music in a surprisingly intimate setting, where you really could hear a pin drop. “When Miles played his solo on ‘Round Midnight’,” Wein remembers of that breakout 1955 jam, “he put his horn right up to the microphone, which trumpet players didn’t do. Normally they like to get some air and play a little bit away from the mic but he put the bell of his horn right up against it, and it came through clear as a bell.” In that moment, with that simple move, Wein states, “That’s when he became the star of the festival and later [Columbia Records A&R man] George Avakian went up and signed him.”
With his “ecumenical” music mix in these five- and six-hour programs – from traditional to bop, hard bop, and re-bop, from cool, modern and post-modern to jazz-rock, rock-jazz, blues and R&B – the contemporary music festival was sired by George Wein. As Kahn affirms, Wein “swayed generations of festival producers and impresarios – from groundbreaking one-offs like the Monterey International Pop Festival in 1967 and Woodstock in 1969, all the way up to today’s genre-blending annuals like Coachella and Bonnaroo, [and in Europe] Glastonbury and Montreux.”
Intrinsically and inextricably linked at the hip were Miles Davis and George Wein, from the first conversation Wein recalls with the trumpeter in 1952, at a little club in New Haven, “when [Miles] was playing with a band that Symphony Sid had put together with Percy Heath and Milt Jackson,” Wein clearly recalls. Twenty years or so later, he memorably amped up the 1969 NJF program with Led Zeppelin, the Mothers of Invention, Jeff Beck, Sly and the Family Stone, and others. Miles was just six weeks away from recording the principal sessions for his all-time game-changing Bitches Brew, and his live band had replaced Hancock, Carter and Williams with Chick Corea, Dave Holland, and Jack DeJohnette.
With more electronic instrumentation, and broader drum patterns, Miles was quickly moving beyond the very jazz styles he had helped to create and popularize. Into the ’70s, rock and R&B-rooted musicians like guitarists Pete Cosey and Reggie Lucas, electric bassist Michael Henderson, Mtume on percussion, plus jazz drummer Al Foster and a rotating cast of saxophonists came aboard. As Miles’ scope expanded, Wein’s festival became a week-long affair in Manhattan, then across Europe.
But to eyewitnesses, Newport Jazz Festival 1969 was ground zero, the big bang that informed Bitches Brew. “I remember that Miles always came to Newport and left as fast as he could,” Wein told Kahn. “In ’66, he came up in a boat and got to the stage in time to play, and was back on the boat and got the hell out of there. In ’69, he stayed from the first day to the last, standing right by my shoulder… He watched every group and watched the response of the audience, who got the most applause, what music they were playing. He was studying. And that affected all the last years of his career.”
MILES DAVIS AT NEWPORT 1955-1975: THE BOOTLEG SERIES VOL. 4 was produced for release by the multiple Grammy Award®-winning trio of Richard Seidel and Michael Cuscuna; with co-producer Steve Berkowitz. Executive producers for the Miles Davis Estate were Cheryl Davis, Erin Davis and Vince Wilburn, Jr. The music was mastered by Mark Wilder and Maria Triana at Battery Studios in New York City. All original concerts were produced by George Wein.
MILES DAVIS AT NEWPORT 1955-1975: THE BOOTLEG SERIES VOL. 4
(Columbia/Legacy Recordings 88875081952)
(All tracks previously unreleased, except where otherwise indicated)
CD 1: (July 17, 1955: Newport Jazz Festival, Newport, RI)
Selections: 1. Spoken Introductions by Duke Ellington and Gerry Mulligan – 2. Hackensack – 3. ‘Round Midnight (previously released) – 4. Now’s The Time –
(All-Star Jam Session: Miles Davis, trumpet; Zoot Sims, tenor saxophone; Gerry Mulligan, baritone saxophone; Thelonious Monk, piano; Percy Heath, bass; Connie Kay, drums.)
(July 3, 1958: Newport Jazz Festival, Newport, RI)
Selections: 5. Spoken Introduction by Willis Conover (previously released) – 6. Ah-Leu-Cha (previously released) – 7. Straight, No Chaser (previously released) – 8. Fran-Dance (previously released) – 9. Two Bass Hit (previously released) – 10. Bye Bye Blackbird (previously released) – 11. The Theme (previously released).
(Miles Davis, trumpet; Cannonball Adderley, alto saxophone; John Coltrane, tenor saxophone; Bill Evans, piano; Paul Chambers, bass; Jimmy Cobb, drums.)
CD 2: (July 4, 1966: Newport Jazz Festival, Newport, RI)
Selections: 1. Gingerbread Boy – 2. All Blues – 3. Stella By Starlight – 4. R.J. – 5. Seven Steps To Heaven – 6. The Theme / Closing Announcement by Leonard Feather.
(July 2, 1967: Newport Jazz Festival, Newport, RI)
Selections: 7. Spoken Introduction by Del Shields – 8. Gingerbread Boy – 9. Footprints – 10. ‘Round Midnight – 11. So What – 12. The Theme – 13. Closing Announcement by Del Shields
(1966 & 1967: Miles Davis, trumpet; Wayne Shorter, tenor saxophone; Herbie Hancock, piano; Ron Carter, bass; Tony Williams, drums.)
CD 3: (July 5, 1969: Newport Jazz Festival, Newport, RI)
Selections: 1. Miles Runs The Voodoo Down (previously released) – 2. Sanctuary (previously released) – 3. It’s About That Time / The Theme (previously released) .
(Miles Davis, trumpet; Chick Corea, electric piano; Dave Holland, bass; Jack DeJohnette, drums.)
(November 1, 1973: Newport Jazz Festival In Europe, Berlin)
Selections: 4. Band warming up / voice over introduction – 5. Turnaroundphrase – 6. Tune In 5 – 7. Ife – 8. Untitled Original – 9. Tune In 5.
(Miles Davis, trumpet, organ; Dave Liebman, soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone, flute; Pete Cosey, guitar, percussion; Reggie Lucas, guitar; Michael Henderson, electric bass; Al Foster, drums; James Mtume Forman, percussion.)
(July 1, 1975: Newport Jazz Festival – NY, Avery Fisher Hall)
Selection: 10. Mtume.
(Miles Davis, trumpet, organ; Sam Morrison, soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone, flute; Pete Cosey, guitar, percussion; Reggie Lucas, guitar; Michael Henderson, electric bass; Al Foster, drums; James Mtume Forman, percussion.)
CD 4: (October 22, 1971 : Newport Jazz Festival In Europe, Neue Stadthalle, Dietikon, Switzerland)
Selections: 1. Directions – 2. What I Say – 3. Sanctuary – 4. It’s About That Time – 5. Bitches Brew – 6. Funky Tonk – 7. Sanctuary.
(Miles Davis, trumpet; Gary Bartz, soprano saxophone, alto saxophone; Keith Jarrett, electric piano, organ; Michael Henderson, electric bass; Ndugu Leon Chancler, drums; Don Alias, percussion; James Mtume Forman, percussion.)
SOURCE Columbia/Legacy Recordings
Miles Davis' 20-year association as an artist at impresario George Wein's renowned Newport Jazz Festival is a thriving tradition that will be celebrated with the release of MILES DAVIS AT NEWPORT 1955-1975: THE BOOTLEG SERIES VOL. 4. The four-CD box set, comprised of live performances by Miles' stellar band lineups in 1955, 1958, 1966, 1967, 1969, 1971, 1973, and 1975, in Newport, Rhode Island, New York City, Berlin, and Switzerland.
The newest entry in Columbia/Legacy Recordings' critically-acclaimed Miles Davis Bootleg Series, NEWPORT 1955-1975 clocks in at 296 minutes, nearly four hours of which is previously unreleased. From Miles' debut performance at NJF in 1955 (a hastily arranged jam session featuring Thelonious Monk and Gerry Mulligan, that immediately led to the trumpeter's Columbia signing), to his final public perform¬ance of the '70s in 1975 (at Lincoln Center during NJF-NY, the singular "Mtume" named for Miles' favored percussion¬ist of that decade), the box set traces the ascendance of Miles' music as the ne plus ultra of jazz. The full-length concert performances alone of Miles' famed "Kind Of Blue" Sextet (with Cannonball Adderley, John Coltrane, Bill Evans, Paul Chambers, and Jimmy Cobb), and second great quintet in '66 and '67 (with Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Ron Carter, and Tony Williams) represent templates that reverberate in jazz and popular music to this day.
||$49.98 USD In Stock
|| Out of Stock
This title will be released on July 17, 2015.
Bill Evans, Bitches Brew, Cannonball Adderley, Chick Corea, Clark Terry, Columbia Records, Dave Holland, George Wein, Gerry Mulligan, Herbie Hancock, Jack DeJohnette, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Cobb, John Coltrane, Kind Of Blue, Led Zeppelin, Legacy Recordings, Michael Henderson, Miles Davis, Mtume, Newport, Newport Jazz Festival, Paul Chambers, Pete Cosey, Reggie Lucas, Ron Carter, Sly and the Family Stone, Sony Music Entertainment, The Bootleg Series, Thelonious Monk, Tony Williams, Wayne Shorter, Woodstock
Neal Schon – Vortex (PRNewsFoto/Music Theories Recordings/ Masco)
X Premieres Lead Track “El Matador” from Double Disc All-Instrumental Album Featuring Legendary Guitarist Schon With Keyboardists Jan Hammer And Igor Len, Alongside Journey’s Steve Smith
NEW YORK, April 29, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Mascot Label Group’s Music Theories Recordings and Neal Schon have announced the release of Vortex on June 23. The 2-CD all-instrumental album utilizes rock as its foundation, while also embracing elements of jazz, classical and world music in an 18-track stunning, sonically explosive collection of original compositions. The release is dedicated to Schon’s best friend and wife, who serves as his true inspiration every day (Both “Lady M” and “Triumph of Love” were written for her, the latter of which he performed at their wedding on December 15, 2013). Schon shares, “This is an evolutionary album for me. I’ve always aspired to be a better player and push musical boundaries. And sure, I’ve sold 80-million records with Journey, and I’m proud of that, but this album is really me — all based on my guitar, which is my ‘voice.’ It’s bold. There’s love, and there’s definitely fire and an element of danger. And the energy level is off the hook.”
That’s evident from the first, mysterious-sounding measures of “Miles Beyond,” the scalding tribute to jazz genius Miles Davis’ pioneering fusion recordings that opens the album. The tune blends Schon’s soaring leads, tectonic plates of grinding rhythm and brilliantly layered melodies within an arrangement that embraces Middle Eastern flourishes plus flashes of African drumming by Steve Smith. “Schon & Hammer Now” is a furious jam between the guitarist and his longtime friend and creative foil, Grammy-winning keyboardist Jan Hammer, whose many accomplishments include charter membership in the groundbreaking Mahavishnu Orchestra. And the two match their brilliant technique and relentless invention throughout, sparring with the grace and speed of a young Mohammad Ali. Schon reveals, “Jan is all over this album. I wrote the material to give Jan room to stretch. There are not many three-minute ditties. It’s all huge, epic, bombastic…futuristic.” After hearing the completed album for the first time, Hammer made a succinct observation, “This is f****** amazing.”
Neal Schon – Vortex out June 23rd (PRNewsFoto/Music Theories Recordings/ Masco)
“Airliner NS910″ is further proof. It’s all speed and swagger, with Schon skywriting the song’s sweetly singing theme in the indelible vapor trail of the instantly recognizable operatic tones of his signature model Paul Reed Smith guitars. He reflects, “Since Vortex is a two-record set, it’s both my ninth and tenth solo albums. That’s where the ‘NS910′ comes from.”
The music of Vortex originated in the hard drives that Schon is constantly filling with ideas for riffs, melodies and chord progressions at home. But they came to life at Berkeley’s Fantasy Studios, his preferred spot for recording since Journey cut the 10-times-platinum number-one album Escape there in 1981. Schon states, “It’s my home away from home. I spend so much time there that they’ve given me my own locker.”
Schon produced and played bass on Vortex, too, and was joined in the studio by Smith and keyboardist Igor Len. Hammer and Len also appeared on Schon’s seventh solo album, The Calling, which was followed by the blues-inspired hard rock album So U. He offers, “Igor and Jan complement each other, and me, beautifully.” And Vortex‘s “Eternal Love” is a testament to Len’s creativity. The song, a richly emotional ballad, features Len alone on piano. The guitarist observes, “He sat down and played the tune spontaneously, and it was so gorgeous and deep that I had to have it on my album.” Schon offers his own reflective solo performance on Vortex with the sparsely arranged acoustic guitar meditation “Mom,” dedicated to his mother, Barbara Schon. He reveals, “Like most of the performances on this album, it wasn’t premeditated. I’d just pick up a guitar and tell my engineer Jesse Nichols to hit ProTools.”
The intensely creative guitar giant has always had a seemingly innate ability to make glorious music. He began playing at age five and was inspired by soul vocalists like Aretha Franklin and Gladys Knight, and blues and jazz guitarists ranging from B.B. King, Albert King and Eric Clapton to Wes Montgomery. When Schon was just 15 years old, Carlos Santana invited him to join his band. Schon’s recording debut was on the classic 1971 album Santana III. He played the solo on the LP’s hit single “Everybody’s Everything.” Recently Schon has been working with Carlos Santana on a new album, co-writing songs and playing key performances including homecoming Santana concerts in Guadalajara and Mexico City that included Journey as the opening band.
Schon formed Journey in 1973 and has led the band through its astonishing 42-year history. Along the way Journey has sold well over 80 million albums, amongst which the band’s Greatest Hits release was certified Diamond by the RIAA for sales in excess of 10 million copies. To date sales now exceed 15 million copies. Eight other Journey album releases have been certified multi-platinum. Neal Schon co-wrote the timeless hit “Don’t Stop Believin,'” which now holds the title as the most digitally downloaded song in history. Seventeen additional Journey singles were Top 40 hits. Schon has received multiple Grammy award nominations for both his work with Journey and his solo recordings, and Journey has been nominated for the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame.
Besides solo albums and tours and his historic work with Journey, Schon has an extensive history of blue-ribbon collaborations. These include co-founding the supergroup Bad English and forming bands with vocalists Paul Rodgers and Sammy Hagar. He released two collaboration albums with Jan Hammer, Untold Passion and Here To Stay, while also performing on releases from Michael Bolton, Return to Forever’s Lenny White and many others.
One thing he’s never done is considered resting on his laurels. Schon reflects, “I feel more aware and alive now than I’ve ever been. Part of that is the sobriety I’ve had for the last seven years. I’ve also evolved as a person and a player though understanding the value of being in the moment – letting things happen and not thinking too much. There’s an old blues saying: ‘If you’re thinkin’, you’re stinkin’. When you stop thinking and just play from the heart, you discover your own voice. That’s the real thing, and that’s what Vortex is about for me.”
For more information contact:
For Art: www.mascot-provogue.com/download
SOURCE Music Theories Recordings/ Mascot Label Group
Journey member. 2 CD set.
||$25.39 USD In Stock
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Aretha Franklin, B.B. King, Bad English, Eric Clapton, Escape, Gladys Knight, Here to Stay, Igor Len, Jan Hammer, Journey, Lenny White, Michael Bolton, Miles Davis, Music Theories Recordings, Neal Schon, Paul Rodgers, Sammy Hagar, Santana III, So U, Steve Smith, The Calling, Untold Passion, Vortex, Wes Montgomery
Legacy Recordings, the catalog division of Sony Music Entertainment, is proud to announce the digital release of Bessie (Music from the HBO Film) on Tuesday, May 12. The official soundtrack for the upcoming HBO film will also be released on CD on Tuesday, June 2. (PRNewsFoto/Legacy Recordings)
Bessie (Music from the HBO Film) Debuts “Gimme A Pigfoot and A Bottle of Beer (2015 Remix),” Pairing Bessie Smith’s Original Recording with New Vocals by Queen Latifah and Enhanced Instrumentation Produced by Adam Blackstone and Queen Latifah
Album Includes Historic Blues and Swing Recordings by Louis Armstrong, Fats Waller, Sippie Wallace, Kid Ory & Fresh Interpretations of Bessie Smith Classics Performed by Queen Latifah
Bessie, an HBO Film, Premieres May 16
NEW YORK, April 28, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Legacy Recordings, the catalog division of Sony Music Entertainment, is proud to announce the digital release of Bessie (Music from the HBO Film) on Tuesday, May 12. The official soundtrack for the upcoming HBO film will also be released on CD on Tuesday, June 2.
The biographic film Bessie, starring Queen Latifah as blues legend Bessie Smith, premieres on HBO on Saturday, May 16.
An evocative collection combining historic and contemporary recordings, Bessie (Music from the HBO Film) debuts seven new Queen Latifah performances including “Young Woman Blues,” “Preachin’ The Blues,” “Long Old Road,” “Down Hearted Blues,” “Work House Blues,” “Weepin’ Woman Blues” (a duet with vocalist Pat Bass) and “Gimme A Pigfoot and A Bottle Of Beer (2015 Remix).”
Bessie (Music from the HBO Film) premieres “Gimme A Pigfoot and A Bottle Of Beer (2015 Remix),” a postmodern reworking of Bessie Smith’s original recording featuring newly recorded vocals, ad-libs and raucous banter by Queen Latifah set to enhanced instrumentation remixed and produced by Adam Blackstone and Queen Latifah. “Gimme A Pigfoot and A Bottle Of Beer (2015 Remix)” is a dream collaboration between the Empress of the Blues and Queen Latifah that exemplifies the brilliance of each of the artists while celebrating the musical soul that unites their eras and generations.
“This is a project that has been close to my heart for many years….to not only star as Bessie Smith but to also produce the film and the soundtrack is a dream for me. Recording this music was an incredible journey and I am proud to be a part of it all.” – Queen Latifah
The album features modern performances of blues, jazz and swing classics including “Prove It On Me,” performed by Carmen Twillie; “See See Rider,” performed by Tamar-Kali; “Laugh Clown Laugh,” performed by Cecile McLorin Salvant; and two new instrumental arrangements from Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks: “I’ve Got What It Takes (But It Breaks My Heart To Give It Away)” and “Hot Time In The Old Town Tonight.”
Legacy Recordings’ Bessie (Music from the HBO Film) is rounded out with authentic period recordings from Fats Waller & His Rhythm (“A Good Man Is Hard To Find”), Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra (“[What Did I Do To Be So] Black And Blue”), Sippie Wallace (“I’m A Mighty Tight Woman”) and Kid Ory’s Creole Orchestra (“Ballin’ The Jack”).
Bessie (Music from the HBO Film)
1) Young Woman’s Blues – Queen Latifah
2) Hot Time In The Old Town – Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks
3) Prove It On Me – Carmen Twillie
4) Weary Blues – Louis Armstrong & His Hot Seven
5) Weepin’ Woman Blues – Queen Latifah & Pat Bass
6) See See Rider – Tamar-kali
7) Ballin’ The Jack – Kid Ory’s Creole Jazz Band
8) Down Hearted Blues – Queen Latifah
9) A Good Man Is Hard to Find – Fats Waller & His Rhythm
10) Preachin’ The Blues – Queen Latifah
11) I’ve Got What It Takes (But It Breaks My Heart To Give It Away) – Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks
12) Work House Blues – Queen Latifah
13) I’m a Mighty Tight Woman – Sippie Wallace
14) (What Did I Do to Be So) Black and Blue – Louis Armstrong And His Orchestra
15) Laugh, Clown, Laugh – Cecile McLorin Salvant
16) Long Old Road – Queen Latifah
17) Gimme A Pigfoot and A Bottle of Beer (2015 Remix) – Bessie Smith featuring Queen Latifah
An HBO Films presentation, Bessie stars Oscar® nominee Queen Latifah (“Chicago“) in the title role and focuses on legendary blues singer Bessie Smith’s transformation from a struggling young vocalist into “The Empress of the Blues,” one of the most successful recording artists of the 1920s and an enduring icon today.
Directed by Dee Rees from a screenplay by Rees and Christopher Cleveland & Bettina Gilois, with a story by Rees and Horton Foote, Bessie is executive produced by Richard D. Zanuck, Lili Fini Zanuck, Queen Latifah, Shakim Compere, Shelby Stone and Randi Michel. Ron Schmidt produces.
The film also stars Michael Kenneth Williams as Bessie’s husband, Jack Gee; Khandi Alexander as Bessie’s older sister, Viola; Tory Kittles as Bessie’s older brother, Clarence; Mike Epps as Richard, a bootlegger and romantic interest; Tika Sumpter as Lucille, a performer and romantic interest; Oliver Platt as famed photographer and writer Carl Van Vechten; Bryan Greenberg as renowned record producer and music critic John Hammond; with Charles S. Dutton as Ma Rainey’s husband, William “Pa” Rainey; and Oscar® winner Mo’Nique as blues legend Ma Rainey.
Bessie offers an intimate look at the determined woman whose immense talent and love for music took her from anonymity in the rough-and-tumble world of vaudeville to the 1920s blues scene and international fame. Capturing Bessie’s professional highs and personal lows, the film paints a portrait of a tenacious spirit who, despite her own demons, became a celebrated legend.
Legacy Recordings logo. Division of SONY Music Entertainment. (PRNewsFoto/Legacy Recordings)
Legacy Recordings, the catalog division of Sony Music Entertainment, is home to the world’s foremost library of historically significant commercial recordings, a peerless collection of works by the most important musical artists of the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Across a variety of platforms, the label offers contemporary music fans access to thousands of meticulously restored and remastered archival titles representing virtually every musical genre including popular, rock, jazz, blues, R&B, folk, country, gospel, Broadway musicals, movie soundtracks, ethnic, world music, classical, comedy and more.
Founded in 1990 by CBS Records (rebranded Sony Music in 1991), Legacy has expanded on its original mission (preserving and reissuing back catalogs of Columbia Records, Epic Records and associated CBS labels) to provide new and innovative avenues for artist and repertoire exposure including Grammy winning curated retrospectives, social media campaigns, Oscar winning soundtracks, new talent signings and groundbreaking campaigns for established artists and catalog.
About HBO Global Licensing
HBO Global Licensing officially licenses the HBO® brand for the development and merchandising of innovative product lines inspired by the network’s award-winning programming. With products created around hit series like Game of Thrones® and True Blood® as well as classic series like The Sopranos®, Sex and the City®, and Entourage, items include fashion apparel, figures, jewelry, digital and CD soundtracks, prop and costume replicas, games, books, and beverages, as well as exclusive, premium collections in partnership with upscale, designer brands. Merchandise can be purchased in retail stores nationwide, at http://store.hbo.com, and at the groundbreaking HBO retail hub, the HBO Shop®, located at 42nd and 6th Avenue in New York City. HBO Global Licensing products are also sold internationally across Europe (www.hboshopeu.com), Asia and Australia.
SOURCE Legacy Recordings
This set brings the artistry of one of America's supreme vocal talents to life. That Bessie Smith was the greatest of all blues singers goes without saying; the recordings that she made for Columbia between 1923 and 1932 have been cherished by devoted listeners and studied by singers all over the world ever since they were released. The ten CDs that comprise this all-inclusive box set commemorating the 75th anniversary of Smith's tragic death, and the 90th anniversary of her signing with Columbia -- capture" The Empress of the Blues" as she defined and perfected the vocal magic that influenced legendary singers from Mahalia Jackson and Billie Holiday to Dinah Washington, Nina Simone, Janis Joplin and Cassandra Wilson.
From her very first recording, the best-selling "Downhearted Blues," to the spirited final session that produced such gems as "Gimme a Pigfoot," Smith remained at the top of her game; among the set's highlights are such classics as "Backwater Blues," "I Need A Little Sugar In My Bowl," "Empty Bed Blues," "Tain't Nobody's Business If I Do" and "After You've Gone," among many others. Smith could often be heard with some of the finest jazz players of the era including trumpeters Louis Armstrong and Joe Smith, pianists James P. Johnson and Fletcher Henderson, trombonists Jack Teagarden and Charlie Green and clarinetist Benny Goodman.
The final two CDs include rare alternate takes, interviews with family members, and soundtrack recordings from Smith's only film appearance in the 1929 short, "St. Louis Blues."
Box Set Includes:
The Complete Recordings, Vol. 1 [2 CDs]
The Complete Recordings, Vol. 2 [2 CDs]
The Complete Recordings, Vol. 3 [2 CDs]
The Complete Recordings, Vol. 4 [2 CDs]
The Complete Recordings, Vol. 5/ The Final Chapter [2 CDs]
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Adam Blackstone, Bessie Smith, Columbia Records, Epic Records, Fats Waller, HBO Film, Kid Ory, Legacy Recordings, Louis Armstrong, Pat Bass, Queen Latifah, Sippie Wallace