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New “Blue Note Select” Packages Coming from Miles, Coltrane, Monk, Brownie

Multi-disc sets part of label’s 75th anniversary celebration

John Coltrane with Miles Davis, Columbia Recording Studios, New York, NY 1958
Thelonious Monk

Blue Note Records, as part of the label’s year-long 75th anniversary celebration, has announced four new releases in its “Blue Note Select” collections: multi-CD sets from Clifford Brown, John Coltrane, Miles Davis and Thelonious Monk, each with original recordings sequenced as they were first released on 10-inch or 78 RPM singles (a departure from previous reissues, which have used recording chronology or later 12-inch versions of the albums for their sequences).

Each Blue Note Select collection, according to a press release from the company, will be presented in special book-style packaging with a new essay, Francis Wolff session photos, original album art and other details. Miles Davis’ Take Off: The Complete Blue Note Albums is available beginning today in 2-CD and digital packages, Clifford Brown’s Brownie Speaks: The Complete Blue Note Recordings will be released June 10 in 3-CD and digital packages, and John Coltrane and Friends’ Sideman: Trane’s Blue Note Sessions will be released July 15 in 3-CD and digital packages. Thelonious Monk’s ‘Round Midnight: The Complete Blue Note Recordings will be released this fall in 2-CD and digital packages.

Details are as follows:

Miles Davis/Take Off: The Complete Blue Note Albums (2CD; digital)

A new, Miles Davis Estate-approved collection of Davis’ three Blue Note 10-inch albums plus all alternate takes issued on subsequent 12-inch albums and CD reissues: a total of 26 tracks recorded for Blue Note Records on three dates in 1952, ’53 and ’54. This is the first time Davis’ 10-inch albums-Young Man With A Horn, Miles Davis Vol. 2 and Vol. 3-have been issued in their original sequence since the early 1950s. The book-style packaging includes a 32-page booklet with an essay by jazz writer Kirk Silsbee, and other elements as noted.

Clifford Brown/Brownie Speaks: The Complete Blue Note Recordings (3CD; digital)

Documenting when trumpeter Clifford Brown was on the rise, the new collection covers his three 10-inch albums from 1953-recorded with J.J. Johnson (Jay Jay Johnson with Clifford Brown), Lou Donaldson (New Faces New Sounds) and his own sextet (New Star On The Horizon)-plus live Birdland recordings headlined by Art Blakey, in which Brown is featured along with Donaldson and pianist Horace Silver. While this collection presents the original 10-inch album sequences for the first time since the mid-1950s, the Birdland shows are presented in their original performance sequence for the first time ever. The book-style package includes a 34-page booklet with an essay by Silsbee, and other elements as noted.

John Coltrane & Friends/Sideman: Trane’s Blue Note Sessions(3CD; digital)

A collection of the saxophonist’s sideman sessions for Blue Note Records from 1956-1957, when Coltrane was a regular member of the Miles Davis Quintet and played with pianist Thelonious Monk. This set, conceived by former Blue Note Records president Bruce Lundvall, marks the first time Coltrane’s sideman sessions for Blue Note have been collected in one place; albums include recordings led by Paul Chambers (Chambers’ Music, a.k.a. High Step, and Whims of Chambers), Johnny Griffin (A Blowing Session) and Sonny Clark (Sonny’s Crib). The entire set will be in original Blue Note mono, with the mono version of Clark’s album on CD for the first time. The book-style package includes a 34-page booklet with an essay by author and educator Ashley Kahn, and other elements as noted.


Thelonious Monk/‘Round Midnight: The Complete Blue Note Recordings (2CD; digital) Monk’s first recordings in the late 1940s were for Blue Note Records, and, as the press release states, “they signaled a new kind of Blue Note, as the label was evolving from an outlet for boogie-woogie and old-time jazz into a flag-waver for hard bop.” These recordings, which include the first version of Monk’s classic composition, “‘Round Midnight” (originally known as “‘Round About Midnight”), were released on a series of 15 78 RPM singles. Later, Monk’s sessions were re-compiled on 10-inch and 12-inch LPs, and this collection will present for the first time Monk’s Blue Note recordings in their original 78 RPM sequence of release, adding as bonus tracks the alternate takes that appeared on later LP and CD releases. In addition, ‘Round Midnight includes nine tracks not available on any current reissues of Monk’s albums.

Originally Published