|A1||He Loved Him Madly||Recorded Columbia Studio E, New York City|
June 19 or 20, 1974
|B1||Maiysha||Recorded Columbia Studio E, New York City|
October 7, 1974
|B2||Honky Tonk||Recorded Columbia Studio E, New York City|
May 19, 1970
|B3||Rated X||Recorded Columbia Studio E, New York City|
September 6, 1972
|C1||Calypso Frelimo||Recorded Columbia Studio E, New York City|
September 17, 1973
|D1||Red China Blues||Recorded Columbia Studio E, New York City March 9, 1972|
|D2||Mtume||Recorded Columbia Studio E, New York City October 7, 1974|
|D3||Billy Preston||Recorded Columbia Studio E, New York City December 8, 1972|
Get Up With It is an album collecting tracks recorded between 1970 and 1974 by Miles Davis. Released on November 22, 1974 as a double LP, it was Davis' last studio album before five years of retirement from music.
"He Loved Him Madly" is a track recorded in tribute to Duke Ellington, who had died one month before; Brian Eno cited it as a lasting influence on his own work.
We had [a] machine invented when we were doing a record called Get Up With It by Miles. We were dedicating a number to Duke Ellington ("He Loved Him Madly"). And I put this track through this piece of equipment. I called Miles up and I says, "Look, something unusual happened here. I can't figure it out. I don't know what it is, but I hear the Duke Ellington band. Not your band, the Duke Ellington band, coming through the speakers." Holy Christ, mean it was traumatic and exciting at the same time. I couldn't believe what I was hearing.
The instruments, whatever they were, it sounded like the rhythm section. I mean the soloists and the brass and saxophones came right straight through. The next day we tried to duplicate it, but couldn't do it. We didn't touch the machines. It's like somebody had pushed a button, and out came Duke. Because, it was a tribute to Duke Ellington. I mean that sounds kind of scary to me but that's what happened. I've used it since and it hasn't created the same kind of illusion. But I think Duke was there in that room that day.
- Teo Macero, "Interview by Iara Lee," Perfect Sound Forever (September 1997)
1973 saw more touring, and the occasional bit of studio recording by Miles’ band. In 1974 a unit of Davis, Henderson, Foster, Mtume, Lucas, and Gaumont, plus new feedback-freakout-oriented guitarist Pete Cosey, with Dave Liebman and/or Sonny Fortune on sax and flute, cut the majority of tracks to be released on Get Up With It. (Some sessions from preceding years were used as well). This record could be seen as the culmination of Miles’ career; it’s some serious business. The key to the album is Henderson’s bass - his playing is perfect and huge. Foster’s drumming provides the perfect foil to him, and you’ve got a thoroughly grounded musical maze starting already. Then add Mtume’s shifting, inventive percussion to that, and stack two rhythmic guitar players on along with one feedback-oriented player (who does some nice soloing on this album) - now you’ve got some great shifting funk going on. Then put Miles on in a surly mood, playing some serious, no-frills trumpet and raising some hell on organ too. It’s quite a trip. I shouldn’t forget Dave Liebman’s contributions - there are some who say that he was partially responsible for "Mayishia", a thoroughly perfect musical act in two parts on here. And Sonny Fortune plays well, and some other names pop up on the recordings as well. Side 1 of this record is a bit strange, a tone-poem dedicated to Duke Ellington who had recently passed away. Side 2 contains "Mayishia" and the strong, deeply funky "Honky Tonk" (actually recorded years previously with a whole host of famous musicians), as well as the bizarre "Rated X". Side 3 is an out-of-control madhouse piece called "Calypso Frelimo" which shows this band at their most anarchic, but clears way for another killer bassline after a while. Side 4 features the dense, energetic "Mtume" (an amazing cut which typifies this band’s sound) and the funky "Billy Preston", along with a relatively traditional piece, "Red China Blues". Each side is about 30 minutes long. If I had to describe this record with one word, the word I would choose would be "massive". This is one that you’ll be taking the measure of for years and years.
- Scott McFarland, "Miles Davis : The 'Electric' Years", Perfect Sound Forever (August 1997)
What qualified a piece for inclusion on [Ambient 4: On Land] was that it took me somewhere, but this might be somewhere that I'd never been before, or somewhere I'd only imagined going to. […] We feel affinities not only with the past, but also with the futures that didn't materialize, and with the other variations of the present that we suspect run parallel to the one we have agreed to live in.
The choice of sonic elements in these places arose less from listening to music than from listening to the world in a musical way. When I was in Ghana, for instance, I took with me a stereo microphone and a cassette recorder, ostensibly to record indigenous music and speech patterns. What I sometimes found myself doing instead was sitting out on the patio in the evenings with the microphone placed to pick up the widest possible catchment of ambient sounds from all directions, and listening to the result on my headphones. The effect of this simple technological system was to cluster all the disparate sounds into one aural frame; they became music.
Listening this way, I realised I had been moving towards a music that had this feeling; as the listener, I wanted to be situated inside a large field of loosely-knit sound, rather than placed before a tightly organised monolith (or stereolith, for that matter). I wanted to open out the aural field, to put much of the sound a considerable distance from the listener (even locating some of it "out of earshot"), and to allow the sounds to live their lives separately from one another, clustering occasionally but not "musically" bound together. This gave rise to an interesting technical difficulty. Because recording studio technology and practice developed in relation to performed music, the trend of that development has been towards greater proximity, tighter and more coherent meshing of sounds with one another. Shortly after I returned from Ghana, Robert Quine gave me a copy of Miles Davis' "He Loved Him Madly". Teo Macero's revolutionary production on that piece seemed to me to have the "spacious" quality I was after, and like [Federico Fellini's] "Amarcord", it too became a touchstone to which I returned frequently.
- Brian Eno, Ambient 4: On Land 1986 liner notes
Miles Davis - Get Up With It 1/2 [Mirrors: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5]
Miles Davis - Get Up With It 2/2 [Mirrors: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5]