More than likely, the serious Miles Davis fan has already bought Sketches of Spain
in numerous editions before, from its original CD issue to two different remasters -- and some have purchased it as part of the Miles Davis & Gil Evans: The Complete Columbia Studio Recordings
box set as well. This 50th Anniversary Legacy Edition will more than likely be either for the serious Miles collector, or for a newcomer to the recordings of Davis and Evans
. Since the single-CD issue of Sketches of Spain
is still available, it remains to be seen who this 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition set -- which contains no unreleased music -- will appeal to; but it is a handsome issue and does contain a couple of nice bonuses to make it attractive. Along with the original album is a 70-minute bonus disc filled with alternate takes and extra tracks. There are four different takes of "Concerto de Arjanuez (Adagio)," including a two-part, alternate take version that lasts in total about 20 minutes; a stellar live version which is the only one that took place, and a brief alternate ending. In addition to other alternates of album pieces are "Maids of Cadiz," which showcases the first Spanish composition that Evans adapted for Miles, and "Teo," from the Someday My Prince Will Come
sessions. It was included because of its symbiotic relationship to "Solea," on Sketches of Spain
. Also included on the bonus disc is a large .pdf file that is in essence a digital booklet with rare photos, press clippings, and previously unpublished documents related to the recordings sessions for the album. This version also comes with a new liner essay by Gunther Schuller
. Again, the more casual Miles listener, and even the purchaser of his classic albums, may hesitate, but for the more serious jazz aficionado, it is somewhat revelatory to hear the bonus material prepared and sequenced in this context; and the extra digital booklet -- given the attractive price of the set -- makes it tough to resist.