Cameo (with Miles Davis): In The Night
In The Night
Machismo (836 002-2)
Tomi Jenkins, Nathan Leftenant (vocals), Merv De Peyer (keyboards, drum programming), Larry Blackmon (vocals, possibly percussion and bass).
Composed by Larry Blackmon & Merv De Peyer.
Recorded: early 1988
Rating: 87/100 (learn more)
Miles Davis's sideman appearances post-Kind Of Blue are about as rare as Arizona Cardinals Super Bowl appearances, but incredibly, both actually happened. In the case of the jazz icon, he showed up one day in the late '80s at a recording session by Cameo, one of the hottest funk bands of that time. Miles came with his sax foil at the time, Kenny Garrett, in tow.
The best part of this mostly instrumental funk-jazz workout comes in the opening seconds, when Miles alone spits out a few notes that are unmistakably his just about a measure ahead of the beginning of the backing track. His open horn playing has that clear but ruminating quality he is famous for, but on the second sequence of vamps, the muted horn appears along with Garrett, and it gets somewhat funkier. Soon afterwards, the horn players battle for space against each other and overdubbed versions of themselves, which makes a pretty good jam session just a little messy.
That can be forgiven; while this performance isn't "Right Off" caliber, you'll know from both the trumpet and sax playing that this ain't no Rick Braun/Gerald Albright summit meeting, either.
Reviewer: S. Victor Aaron