(NOTE: I ADDED some information from the Swedish archive about the date and about how these interviews were made. The new material is in the first two paragraphs.) Did you notice that Claes Dahlgren began the rare 1955 interview by saying “the last time you were on this program was in 1951”? Well, thanks to our friends in Sweden (see below), I can now share that first interview with you. This was broadcast only in Sweden on April 24, 1951, and it was recorded in NYC. The “script” for the program is dated March 14, 1951, and that was also the day of recording, according to a dated photo that exists of Miles and Dahlgren in Sanders Recording Studios, 167 West 48th St., off Times Square in New York City. (Thank you to Miles researcher Jan Lohmann for the photo information.) This is the earliest known audio interview with Miles—he was 24 years old! (He would become 25 on May 26.)
This is fantastic to hear. Miles is so engaging, warm and upbeat. No surprise. I noticed the polls- I used to hang out for hours after the gig while on Maynard Ferguson's band (if we were doing a "hit and run" we'd play one city, get on a plane or comfortable bus and travel all night). I liked traveling on the bus because Maynard would grab me and he would chat all night. I was always surprised that the whole band didn't want to hear his recounting of the history- I just loved these times! His favorite subjects were Miles, who he really loved and admired (them playing at Birdland opposite one another, and there are two great stories he told many times) Johnny Hodges and Duke (probably his favorite band) Ben Webster, Joe Glaser, Billie Holiday, Thelonious Monk, Paul Gonzalves, and of course Dizzy Gillespie. Dizzy even played piano in one of Maynard's rehearsals, and made harmonic suggestions regarding the arrangements to Maynard, who was thrilled. That period I believe of the late 50's Maynard spoke at length about Miles band with Trane playing opposite him at Birdland. He was truly enamored with that iteration of Miles' band. Thanks again, Dr. Porter. We all appreciate this information you share, so much.
Rolf Ericson played with Duke for several years too.
Talking so fast it's hard to understand
Thanks for this great recording. Amazing to hear young Miles talking and thinking.
I thought I knew all the 1950 all- stars, but when "Jay Johnson " was listed as the wining male vocalist that threw me for a loop ! Thanks for all you do and keep swingin'