Still mourning the departure of John Coltrane, who had left him in the spring of 1960, Miles Davis tried to imagine what other saxophonist could make him forget the fire of Trane’s music. He thought of Wayne Shorter, but Art Blakey had just hired him for his group, the Jazz Messengers. It was with former Jazz Messenger Hank Mobley that on March 7, 1961, he attempted to recapture the miracle of “Blue In Green” on “Drad-Dog.” But he quickly returned to the hard bop tradition on “Pfrancing,” a play on the words dancing, frantic and prancing, in tribute to his by then wife Frances Taylor, who appeared on the cover. During the next session, while Miles was about to wrap up “Someday My Prince Will Come,” John Coltrane suddenly appeared in the studio between two sets at the Apollo Theater where he was performing. In two choruses, Coltrane conveyed the quintessence of his art. The next day he returned bringing, for the last time, the intensity of his flame to the music of Miles, who in “Teo,” took advantage of his presence to extend the modal explorations of “Flamenco Sketches” even further.

Note: “Drad-Dog,” track 4, is Goddard spelled backwards. It is Miles’ tribute to Goddard Lieberson, the highly regarded and very supportive President of Columbia Records at the time of this recording.

Original issue: Columbia LP CS 8456 on December 11, 1961
Producer: Teo Macero
Engineers: Fred Plaut (tracks 3, 4), Frank Laico (all other tracks)
March 7, 1961 (a)
March 20, 1961 (b)
March 21, 1961 (c)
Miles Davis (tpt); John Coltrane (ts – tracks 1, 5); Hank Mobley (ts – tracks 1-4, 6-8); Wynton Kelly (p); Paul Chambers (b); Jimmy Cobb (d – on all tracks except 7); Philly Joe Jones (d – track 7 only)
All tracks recorded at Columbia 30th Street Studio, NYC

  1. Some Day My Prince Will Come [b]
  2. Old Folks [b]
  3. Pfrancing (No Blues) [a]
  4. Drad-Dog [a]
  5. Teo [c]
  6. I Thought About You [c]
  7. Blues No. 2* [c]
  8. Someday My Prince Will Come* [b]

Not on original LP