The wealth of documentation chronicling Miles Davis’ electric period begins with an 85-minute audience reel captured at a small club in Rochester, NY on February 25, 1969. It concludes here at Lincoln Center on July 1, 1975 with a tape recorded on stage by guitarist Pete Cosey. While Miles would perform his final concert of the 1970s in Central Park on September 5 – a tape of which is yet to surface – at least one subsequent gig in Miami had been booked. When Miles canceled the date last-minute due to ill health, the concert promoter impounded the band’s gear, cauterizing the electric era and kick-starting the trumpeter’s period of seclusion that would last through the end of the decade.
“I was spritually tired of all the bullshit I had been going through for all those long years. I felt artistically drained, tired. I didn’t have anything else to say musically. I knew that I needed a rest and so I took one.
I was beginning to see pity in people’s eyes when they looked at me and I hadn’t seen that since I was a junkie. I didn’t want that. I put down the thing I loved most in life – my music – until I could pull it all back together again.”from Miles: The Autobiography
Lincoln Center was a venue Miles knew well, having recorded a trio of live albums there, including My Funny Valentine and Four & More during a February 12, 1964 date, as well as the 1972 In Concert LP documenting the barely controlled chaos of his 9-piece ensemble. Given that context, there’s undeniable poetry in Miles returning to the venue for the final recorded performance of his most creatively adventurous era.Continue reading “7.1.1975 Avery Fisher Hall”