Who was Miles Davis?
Miles Davis was an American Jazz trumpeter, music composer and bandleader. He played very significant role in the development of Jazz music. During his career, he experimented with the genre of rock music along with jazz.
Miles Davis was born as Miles Dewy Davis III on May 26th in Alton, Illinois. His father, Miles II, was a dental surgeon. And his mother Cleota Henry, was a music teacher. He had two younger siblings.
Family and School
Miles father gifted to Miles the trumpet when he was thirteen years old. Elwood Buchanan was his mentor. He taught him to play the trumpet without vibrato. He later joined Eddie Randle’s orchestra, Blue Devils.
In 1944, Davis attended Juilliard School (Institute of Musical Arts, then) in New York. In the following year, Davis decided to drop out of Juilliard and pursue a full time career in music. He began to play with Charlie Parker’s band. From 1945 to 1948, Davis recorded with Parker.
Early Career Life
Davis placed the Miles Davis nonet with eight other musicians in 1948. They released many singles but went unnoticed. It was only with the compilation of major songs in the album, ‘Birth of the Cool’ that they gained recognition. These songs were considered to be new innovation in Jazz Music.
Davis’s Miles Davis, Quartet’ was released in 1954 in 1954 Davis performed ‘Round Midnight’ at the Newport Jazz Festival. He also formed a permanent troupe, The Great Quintet. Major recordings by the quintet include, ‘Live at the plugged Nickel, E.S.P and ‘Miles Smiles’ In 1959, Davis’ album ‘Kind of Blue’ was released. It is also one of the largest-selling jazz albums.
Davis Miles Albums
Davis albums’ Miles Ahead’ Porgy and Bess’ and ‘Sketches of Spain’ were collaborations with Gil Evans. Davis’ albums ‘Bitches Brew’ was released in 1969. It marked the onset of the jazz fusion movement. His important albums from 1970 include ‘Live-Evil and the soundtrack ‘A Tribute to Jack Johnson.’ During 1985 album, you’re Under Arrest’ Davis interpreted songs by Michael Jackson and Cyndi Lauper.
Warner Bros and Others
Davis creates his album ‘Tutu’ with Warner Bros. during 1986 for which he won Grammy Award. His albums, ‘Aura’ was released in 1989. He won another Grammy Award for this.
Davis also acted in movies like Scrooged and Dingo. Davis published his autobiography Miles: The Autobiography with Quincy Troupe in 1989. In 1991, Davis played with Quincy Jones at the Montreux Jazz Festival.
Prince of Darkness and Achievements of Davis
Davis Miles Also known as ‘Prince of Darkness’ due to his personality and voice. He participated in anti-apartheid albums to show his support against racist policies. His last albums, ‘Doo-Bop’ was released posthumously in 1992.
Miles Davis has been awarded eight Grammy Awards. He even received the lifetime Achievements Award in 1900. He was honoured with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1998. Davis was inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and honoured as “one of the key figures in the history of jazz”. He was bestowed with France’s highest civilian honour, the Chevalier de la Legion d’ Honneur, in Paris. He was also inducted to the St Louis of Fame in 1990.
Love Life and Last Day
Davis married several times, but all of them ended in divorce. His last marriage was to the American actor, Cicely Tyson, in 1981. They got divorced in 1989. He fathered four children. Davis passed away on 28th September, 1991, due to respiratory failure and pneumonia. His was 65 years old.
Davis also achieve their last Grammy Award for his recording with Quincy Jones in 1993, posthumously. He is considered to be one of the most influential jazz musicians in history, with the likes of Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington and Charlie Parker.