Last month, it was announced that a previously unheard Miles Davis album would be coming in September. Rubberband was originally recorded in the fall of 1985, but was shelved the following year after Davis made the transition from his longtime home at Columbia Records to Warner Bros Records. The lost album has remained virtually untouched for over 30 years, but one of its songs, “Rubberband Of Life,” was released as a Record Store Day exclusive EP last fall. Today, we get to hear another track from that album called “Paradise.”
Davis’ nephew and collaborator Vince Wilburn Jr. finished “Paradise” with original producers Randy Hall and Zane Giles. Wilburn told Rolling Stone, “The track was dated. We wanted to give it a more carnival-like atmosphere. That’s why we reconstructed it with heavy percussion, bringing in the legendary King Errisson and session ace Munyungo Jackson (Stevie Wonder, Miles Electric Band).”
This track is genuinely feels like a voyage into a paradisal horizon. The Caribbean influence is most felt as light steel drums swim countercurrent to the bass measures. Each of the centerpiece instruments alternate soloing — an acoustic guitar gleefully matches the vibrancy of Davis’s trumpeting. An effervescent flute dances in the sunny air created by the fusion of all these elements. Medina Johnson pleasantly supplies ad libs while the refrain, “Come on, take a trip to paradise/Where dreams are just beyond the sea,” is repeated throughout.
Listen to “Paradise” below.
Rubberband will be out 9/6 via Rhino/Warner.