Tag Archives: newport jazz festival

MTH-V: Mike Stern & Bob Berg

Two weeks ago I posted a 1985 Miles Davis performance featuring Bob Berg and John Scofield. Piggybacking on that, this week I’d like to focus Bob Berg and another guitarist: Mike Stern (another Miles alumnus). This time they’re fronting their own band, having each moved on from being sidemen to the Prince of Darkness.

Berg’s “Friday Night at the Cadillac Club” is a fun and funky blues, especially with Stern. (I like bassist Lincoln Goines; Dennis Chambers‘s drumming is pretty static, but that somewhat comes with the funk-ish territory.) This particular tune sticks out in my mind after having seen Berg in what turned out to be his final year. (I saw him in February 2002, and he was killed in an car accident that December.) I whistled that melody to myself for weeks afterward.

Both of the videos are from 1990. The first is from Japan’s 1990 Newport Jazz Festival. (Enjoy the ubiquitous Budweiser ads throughout the festival grounds.) I prefer the solos in this first video, but the sound quality is better in the second (though the first is good enough). Beware the hideous cuts around the second chorus of each solo in the second video, however. (That’s why it’s not the main video in this post.) Music aside, someone should have suggested that Bob pack a second outfit for this tour. 🙂 But, at least his fashion sense drastically improved after 1985!


(Beware of skips!)