Fresh off a triumphant tour of Japan, the Miles Davis septet headed into the studio for a brief session on February 27th to lay down the still-unissued “Turn of the Century“. Despite Miles’ absence on the track, the 16-minute jam is a killer, with Pete Cosey soloing at length and Mtume smudging the air with washes of textural drum machine as the rhythm section continues to ride the wave of Agharta and Pangaea‘s funkiest stretches. Why it was left off the period-specific Complete On the Corner Sessions box set is a true puzzler.
Following the session, the band returned to the road for a string of dates with Herbie Hancock’s Headhunters – a dream double bill for sure but one that found Miles on unfamiliar turf, as he recounted in his 1989 autobiography.
Herbie had a big hit album and he was really well liked among the young black kids. We agreed to be his opening act. Deep down that pissed me off. When we played Hofstra University, Herbie – who is one of the nicest people on earth, and I love him – came back to my dressing room just to say hello. I told him that he wasn’t in the band and that the dressing room was off limits to anybody who wasn’t in the band. When I thought about it later, I realized that I was just angry about having to open up for one of my ex-sidemen. But Herbie understood and we cleaned it up later.
Despite the high profile of the tour’s leading men, tour ephemera and concert reviews are rarer than hen’s teeth, and no video or photographs are currently in circulation. This audience tape of Miles’ matinee and evening sets in Hofstra is among the tour’s only known documents.Continue reading “3.22.1975 Hofstra University”