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Herbie Hancock/Michael Brecker/Roy Hargrove: Directions in Music: Live at Massey Hall

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Illustration of Michael Brecker, John Coltrane, Herbie Hancock, Roy Hargrove, Miles Davis

Few album titles are as draped in jazz history as Directions in Music: Live at Massey Hall. “Directions In Music” was a phrase stamped on truly epochal Miles Davis albums like In a Silent Way and Bitches Brew. Toronto’s Massey Hall was the site of what is generally regarded as the greatest jazz concert ever, the fabled 1953 meeting of Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Bud Powell, Charles Mingus and Max Roach.

Documenting a tour whose marketing angle was Davis and John Coltrane’s 75th birthdays, Directions in Music is neither a signal event like the Davis albums, nor will it be inflated to historical proportions after the current media cycle. But pianist Herbie Hancock, tenor saxophonist Michael Brecker, trumpeter/flugelhornist Roy Hargrove, bassist John Patitucci and drummer Brian Blade create enough compelling music to prompt serious discussion about retaining the vitality of one era’s innovations when they become the standard operational procedures of the next.

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