5

Chick Remembers Miles

Photo credit: Rainer Alexander

Scott H. Thompson By

Sign in to view read count
In celebration of Miles Davis' birthday, Chick Corea sent this note to me on the day Miles passed away (September 28, 1991). I'd like to share it with you all...
Even though I played in his band for only two years, Miles has been a stable presence in my life since I began listening to him on recordings in the early '50s.

Along with my father, Armando, there were two buddies I had—Joel Karp and Lenny Nelson—who used to share my enthusiasm for Miles. We could stay in touch with the local record store in Boston and make sure our friend there would alert us to each new Miles release that came out. Then we'd get the record and go home and wear it out.

The first time I saw Miles live was at the old Storyville—George Wein's first jazz club. It was an incredible night for me. By that time, Miles had Cannonball Adderley, John Coltrane, Paul Chambers, Jimmy Cobb, and this new studious-looking guy on piano. I was so disappointed not to see Wynton Kelly there—he had become one of my favorites on piano. So it was difficult for me to appreciate Bill Evans that day. It wasn't until I heard Bill on record that I began to appreciate his genius. Anyway, hearing the magnificent group Miles brought that day helped me set a high ideal for myself and the quality of music I wanted to strive for.

Miles created so many bands with the atmosphere of freedom to create that he helped inspire a spirit of creation that I feel changed the music world and will be a positive influence into the future.

Miles was anything but conservative and "agreeable" and always had the courage to play his music and live his life the way he wanted. And because the quality of his art was always so high, the whole legacy of recorded music and all the lives of audiences and fellow musicians that he touched are and will remain a contribution of the greatest magnitude to the human race's striving for freedom.

Here's to you, Miles—thanks for giving us the joy of music.

Chick Corea

Post a comment

Watch

Tags

Shop Amazon

More

Jazz article: Tony Malaby: Turnpike Diaries
Jazz article: Sun Ra's Journey To Moers
Jazz Raconteurs
Sun Ra's Journey To Moers
Jazz article: Chick Remembers Miles
Jazz Raconteurs
Chick Remembers Miles
Jazz article: Larry Coryell: Free Spirit and Pioneer
Jazz article: Bill Evans on meeting Miles
Jazz Raconteurs
Bill Evans on meeting Miles
Jazz article: As Dizzy's World Turns
Jazz Raconteurs
As Dizzy's World Turns
Jazz article: Live Trane: Never Before, Never After
Jazz article: David Weiss: Memories of Freddie Hubbard

Popular

Read Charles Mingus: An Essential Top Ten Albums
Read Top Ten Kennedy Center Musical Moments
Read Zakir Hussain: Making Music, Part 1-2
Read Meet Gabrielle Cavassa

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded albums and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, limited reopenings and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary step that will help musicians and venues now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the sticky footer ad). Thank you!

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.