Miles Davis: Mademoiselle Mabry (Miss Mabry)


Mademoiselle Mabry (Miss Mabry)


Miles Davis (trumpet)


Filles de Kilimanjaro (Columbia Legacy CK 46116)

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Miles Davis (trumpet), Wayne Shorter (tenor sax), Chick Corea (electric and acoustic pianos), Dave Holland (bass), Tony Williams (drums).

Composed by Miles Davis


Recorded: New York, September 1968


Rating: 70/100 (learn more)

The lengthiest track on Filles de Kilimanjaro is also its least effective. The melody is unforgettable, likely due to 16 minutes of repetition resulting in one of Miles Davis's lesser creations. Having conquered most of his influences, this basic extrapolation adds nothing new to a vast legacy comprised of many better examples of his progressive approach to the blues. At a snail's pace, "Mademoiselle Mabry" rolls down a lengthy, unchanging road, and even Miles's solo seems overlong, meaning it fits in well with the recording itself. Unfortunately, Miles provides the sole highlight, because, over a quarter-hour, the musicians seem unconcerned with either breaking new ground or adding any collective tension whatsoever. To his credit, Tony Williams sounds ready and willing to break out of the mold, but his efforts are thwarted by the situational orthodoxy, and listeners will eventually desire more action than what is presented here. The recording definitely leaves much to be desired, sounding like an unfinished composition that ought to have been left on the cutting-room floor. Not quite faceless, yet far from essential, "Mademoiselle Mabry" is tough to recommend to anyone outside of hardcore Miles enthusiasts.

Reviewer: Marcus Singletary


  • 1 Hayden // May 21, 2009 at 04:35 PM
    I disagree greatly. To me, this song is one of the most moving tracks on the record. Did you even notice how this is a rearrangement and ode to Jimi Hendrix's "Wind Cries Mary"? Probably not. You were too busy trying to think of big words to make this review sound smart. Close, but no cigar dude.