Thursday, May 26, 2016

The Miles Davis legacy, still vibrant after all these years

Trumpeter, bandleader and jazz innovator Miles Davis would have turned 90 today (May 26), had he not passed away nearly 25 years ago. That quarter-century absence from the jazz scene arrives on September 28, 2016.

His music continues to resonate for lovers of his various styles of performance: bop, cool bop, modal jazz, hard bop, electronic fusion, and instrumental pop music. He was one of the pivotal figures in modern jazz. Miles was a charming, frustrating enigma – blessed with one of the sweetest tones ever heard on trumpet and dogged by a "Prince of Darkness" persona that was as much a buffer guarding his private space as it was a mystique.

On this Milestone day, here’s an opportunity to check out or revisit the 4,000-word profile I prepared just before his 60th birthday. The four-hour interview experience was quite illuminating about the man and his music. I’m also sharing a few images from that April 7, 1986 afternoon in Manhattan.


Happy 90th, Miles. wherever your spirit resides today. It certainly resides in countless musical hearts, given the relentless interest in the music.

 Photos © Ken Franckling 1986, all rights reserved.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

CDs of Note – Short Takes

Tis the season for jazz tribute recordings. Taking a look at CD projects honoring the musical legacies of Jackie McLean, Marian McPartland, Oscar Peterson, Dinah Washington, Grover Washington Jr. and Attila Zoller.... 

Monday, May 2, 2016

Opening a month-long tribute to a jazz legend

James Suggs
Much attention will be paid throughout May to the musical legacy of trumpeter Miles Davis, who would have turned 90 this May 26. His musical legacy remains so strong today that it sometimes is hard to fathom that he left us a quarter-century ago - on September 28, 1991.

Trumpeter James Suggs assembled a fine quintet to honor Davis's imprint on mainstream jazz and shared music from the horn legend at a Sunday, May 1 concert co-sponsored by the Tampa (FL) Jazz Club, WUSF's "All Night Jazz" program and Hillsborough Community College's Visual and Performing Arts Series.