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Miles gave preference to live-band drummer Jack De Johnette because of his “deep groove,”  invited Lifetime organist Larry Young instead of Hancock, and also added session bassist and Columbia producer Harvey Brooks.Together with Zawinul and Mc Laughlin, Young and Brooks had played on a session Miles organized for his wife, Betty Mabry, a few weeks earlier to record her first and ultimately unsuccessful solo album, .
(“Sanctuary” had, of course, already been recorded by the second great quintet on February 15, 1968.) Having broken in this new material, Miles felt confident enough to book three successive days of studio time.
He began by calling in the same crew that had recorded : Wayne Shorter, Chick Corea, Joe Zawinul, John Mc Laughlin and Dave Holland; only Tony Williams and Herbie Hancock were missing.
Carlos Santana speculated that the album was a “tribute” to “the cosmic ladies” who surrounded Miles at the time and introduce him to some of the music, clothes, and attitudes of the ’60s counterculture.
[Footnote 1] Gary Tomlinson, on the other hand, assumed that “bitches” referred to the musicians themselves.
Miles also summoned 19-year-old drummer Lenny White who, like Tony Williams, is reported to have been brought to his attention by saxophonist Jackie Mc Lean.
Drummer/percussionist Don Alias had been introduced to Miles by Tony Williams, and brought along percussionist Jim Riley, also known as “Jumma Santos.” Tenor saxophonist and bass clarinettist Bennie Maupin was recommended by Jack De Johnette.Bitches Brew was not a sudden dramatic move in a completely new direction for Miles, though.In line with his long-standing, step-by-step working methods, the recording was maybe a large, but nevertheless logical step forward on a course he had set almost two years earlier.While the music was developing I would hear something that I thought could be extended or cut back.So that recording was a development of the creative process, a living composition.But Bitches Brew’s ferocity and power carried a momentum that was much harder to turn around.The hypnotic grooves, rooted in rock and African music, heralded a dramatic new musical universe that not only gained Miles a new audience, but also divided it into two groups-each side looking at this new music from totally different, and seemingly unbridgeable, perspectives.Miles’ live and studio directions were strongly diverging around this time, with the studio experiments pioneering new material-incorporated elements of rock, soul and folk that only gradually filtered through to the live stage.But in July of 1969 Miles’ live quintet began performing “Spanish Key,” “Miles Runs the Voodoo Down” and “Sanctuary,” all of which would appear on .The recording’s enormous influence on the jazz music scene was bolstered by the fact that almost all the musicians involved progressed to high-profile careers in their own right.In the early 1970s, Joe Zawinul and Wayne Shorter (with percussionist Airto Moreira) were involved in Weather Report, Herbie Hancock and Bennie Maupin set up Mwandishi, John Mc Laughlin (with Billy Cobham) created Mahavishnu Orchestra and Chick Corea founded Return to Forever with Lenny White.