Dig (Miles Davis)

Dig is a jazz album of Miles Davis Sextet published in 1951 on the Prestige label. Trumpet player Miles Davis is accompanied by two young saxophonists, tenor Sonny Rollins and 19-year-old violinist Jackie McLean, who makes his first recording. Pianist Walter Bishop is also present, as well as bassist Tommy Potter and drummer Art Blakey.

After inaugurating the school of cool jazz with the Birth of the Cool recording sessions in 1949 and 1950, Davis almost immediately turned away from that sound in the early 1950s, instead exploring hard bop.

The Prestige label is one of the first to use the 33-rpm record format, created by Columbia Records in 1948. The 78-rpm format requires a recording time of less than 4 minutes while the new 33-rpm format allows longer durations. long. “Bluing” song on this album is one of the first titles of nearly 10 minutes; allowing Miles Davis to express himself further. His approach of improvisation thus found enough space to extend the solos on all the tracks of the album.

Unless otherwise stated, all titles are Miles Davis.

  1. Dig – 7:33
  2. It’s Only a Paper Moon (Harold Arlen, Yip Harburg, Billy Rose) – 5:23
  3. Denial – 5:39
  4. Bluing – 9:55
  5. Out of the Blue – 6:15

The tracks were recorded on October 5, 1951 at Apex Studio in New York. The original album is referenced Prestige PRLP 7012.

The material was originally released on two 10-inch LPs, except for “Denial”, released on a 1954 7″ (Prestige PREP 1361). “Dig” and “It’s Only a Paper Moon” first appeared on The New Sounds (PRLP 124), as did “Conception” and “My Old Flame”. “Bluing” and “Out of the Blue” were originally released on Blue Period (PRLP 140). When the material was reconfigured for the new 12-inch format, “Conception” and “My Old Flame” were included on the Prestige various artists collection Conception (PRLP 7013).

Dig(miles davis)


  • Miles Davis,  trompette (1 – 6)
  • Sonny Rollins, saxophone ténor (1 – 6)
  • Jackie McLean, saxophone alto (1, 3 – 5)
  • Walter Bishop Jr, piano  (1 – 6)
  • Tommy Potter, contrebasse  (1 – 6)
  • Art Blakey, batterie  (1 – 6)

“My second Prestige session of the year was to take place in October 1951. I wanted to do better than the first time. In addition, Prestige had to register me using a new technology, the microgroove. Bob Weinstock explained to me that it would allow me to exceed the three-minute limit imposed by the 78-lap. We could stretch the solos as we did live in club. I was going to be one of the first jazz artists to record in 33-tours, until then reserved for live concerts. I hired Sonny Rollins, Art Blakey, Tommy Potter, Walter Bishop and Jackie McLean. It was Jackie’s first recording. I did my best recording for a long time I had worked well, I had the orchestra rehearsed, everyone knew the repertoire and arrangements, Sonny like Jackie McLean, played like crazy. The disc was titled Miles Davis All Stars; but it was sometimes called simply “Dig”. Mingus had followed me to the studio with his bass and played a little background on Conception. It does not appear on the cover because of its exclusivity contract with Verve. ”

from: Miles. The autobiography, Miles Davis with Quincy Troupe, p.156, Infolio, 2007.

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