Miles ahead

Updated: May 26, 2020, 10:43 IST | Shunashir Sen | Mumbai

On the occasion of Miles Davis's birthday, three city musicians tell us about the impact that the jazz legend left on them

A fine catalyst
Shirish Malhotra, saxophonist

Shirish Malhotra

The first Miles Davis tune that I ever heard was a cover of Cyndi Lauper's Time after time. This was when I was in school, before I got into jazz. It was definitely one of the smoother compositions I had heard but it took me a while to discover his other stuff, because I didn't know where to look since there wasn't much Internet back then. Then I heard the Bitches Brew sessions and became interested in him because he was capable of such extremes. Davis loved bringing people together, who are tasteful and experienced in their own way. He always had the spirit of experimentation, which really changed jazz music for the next generation. He was a catalyst between different schools of thought.

Legend has it
Sheldon D'Silva, bassist

Sheldon D'Silva

The way Miles Davis put his music forward was really interesting. Many of the legends that we know of today have emerged from bands that he formed. He gave them a stage when a lot of other artistes were reluctant. Kind of blue is a classic album of his that you just can't ignore. It holds a lot of crucial fundamentals that every jazz musician should listen to.

A complex brew
Karim Ellaboudi, pianist

Karim Ellaboudi

Miles Davis cuts across generations. He was there from the time of bebop to hip-hop, and he participated in all of it. My favourite band of his is the one where he teamed up with Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Tony Williams and Ron Carter, and Kind of blue is an album that has stayed with me. Bitches Brew was a landmark, but it was for serious musicians. Kind of blue had more pop sensibilities.

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