Miles Davis

Rock & Roll Hall of Famer

Category: Performer

Inducted in: 2006

Inducted by: Herbie Hancock

Nominated in: 2006

First Eligible: 1986 Ceremony


Inducted into Rock Hall Revisited in 1994 (ranked #5 in the Influences - Rock Era category) .


Essential Albums (?)WikipediaAmazon MP3Amazon CD
Birth of the Cool (compilation) (1957)
Milestones (1958)
Kind of Blue (1959)
Sketches of Spain (1960)
In a Silent Way (1969)
Bitches Brew (1970)

Essential Songs (?)WikipediaAmazon MP3YouTube
So What (1959)
Flamenco Sketches (1959)
Bitches Brew (1970)

Miles Davis @ Wikipedia

Miles Davis Videos

Comments

22 comments so far (post your own)

What????

Posted by StarMan on Monday, 10.1.07 @ 12:35pm


Blood, Sweat & Tears was fired by the same questionable impulse to fuse rock and jazz that comprised Miles Davis.

-Rolling Stone


"Blood, Sweat and Tears is embarrassing to me. They try to be so hip, they're not ... I know what they try to do: they try to get Basie's sound with knowledge."

—Miles Davis


Oh, excuse me! You people at the Rock Hall are so elite and of a higher pedigree.

This is an excerpt from Miles Davis' biography at the Rock Hall. Notice the indirect reference to Blood, Sweat & Tears and Chicago in the last sentenced:

It is important to note that Miles Davis did not make jazz-rock - a briefly popular hybrid in the late Sixties and early Seventies, whose chief proponents were Blood, Sweat & Tears and Chicago. Davis played jazz, period. But his forward-thinking sensibility, insatiably curious muse and eagerness to move music into uncharted realms made him a contemporary musician, irrespective of genre. The bond he established with rock’s more inquisitive listeners at that time carried through to his death in 1991. Moreover, his career-long example of pushing the boundaries has influenced many of rock’s leading lights, particularly those who eschewed the status quo for musical explorations on rock’s more experimental tip. He possessed one of the most gifted and curious minds in music history, and compromise was not in his blood.

COMPROMISE!!

This is why Blood, Sweat & Tears is not in the Rock Hall!

Posted by Roy on Thursday, 01.10.08 @ 07:55am


Intereesting too, Ray that this line in that bio:

".. particularly those who eschewed the status quo for musical explorations on rock’s more experimental tip.."

can be applied to many artists who find themselves not even glanced at by the Hall, particularly the entire progressive genre, but for Pink Floyd.

Demonstrates in the harsh light just how uber-subjective and really bullshit the whole pretentious approach to this Hall is --- it's a nifty little club that Wenner and his lackies made in a vacuum from the world of though outsdie if his Rolling Stone mentality. He inducted Miles Davis to add some hip "authenticity" bling to his private collection.

Check out this blog on the whole Miles Davis farce:
http://blogcritics.org/archives/2006/03/13/160639.php

Posted by shawn on Thursday, 01.10.08 @ 08:05am


I really like Miles Davis, and he definitely reached out beyond the norm in jazz circles, but it was all JAZZ!! I don't think anything he did could be remotely mistaken for rock...didn't quite get his induction. Hands down first ballot jazz hall-of-famer though!!

Posted by Terry on Thursday, 02.21.08 @ 16:49pm


It is important to note that Miles Davis did not make jazz-rock - a briefly popular hybrid in the late Sixties and early Seventies, whose chief proponents were Blood, Sweat & Tears and Chicago. Davis played jazz, period.


Totally false and inane comment. If he really believes that, he's ignorant about Miles' music of that period.

I think the writer was trying to imply that BS&T and Chicago didn't get in because being a major proponent of a music style that was "briefly popular" doesn't qualify them for the RRHOF and rationalized Miles getting in by claiming that he didn't play this kind of music anyway.

It's a pretty ridiculous reach, IMO.

Posted by Roy on Sunday, 06.15.08 @ 14:22pm


Blood, Sweat & Tears was fired by the same questionable impulse to fuse rock and jazz that comprised Miles Davis and nearly killed off Jeff Beck.

—Rolling Stone


"Blood, Sweat and Tears is embarrassing to me. They try to be so hip, they're not ... I know what they try to do: they try to get Basie's sound with knowledge."

—Miles Davis

Posted by Roy on Saturday, 07.26.08 @ 19:49pm


Didn't he predate rock n roll?

Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, 11.15.08 @ 14:05pm


The name of the Hall Of Fame should be modified if jazz artists, hip hop artists, pop artists, etc. are going to be considered for induction. Not that they shouldn't be though.

Posted by Patrick on Saturday, 11.29.08 @ 21:13pm


What exactly is "Rock & Roll" supposed to mean anyway? Could any of you people care to explain to me what he (or she) understands by that term, since you all seem to know exactly what it's all about? I'm not a big jazz fan, let alone an expert, but even I own "Kind of Blue", "Bitches Brew" and "In a Silent Way".

Posted by denyo on Wednesday, 04.1.09 @ 16:03pm


On Bitches Brew, Miles Davis replaced the conventional piano with the electric piano and organs; he replaced the acoustic bass viol with electric bass guitar; he employed electric guitarists more frequently; his saxophonists played soprano sax more often than any other instrument; and he started the practice of using a conventional drum set and an auxiliary percussion at the same time. He started to incorporate the rhythm section concept more frequently. His performance format and harmonies centered on a few repeated chords, a repeating bass figure, or a mode, rather than a sequence of frequently changing chords. Complexity was concentrated in the rhythm section figures rather than in the melodies. This new format used medleys instead of the entire band stopping before going on to the next tune. Davis added new dimensions to his trumpet style as well. He wired his instrument to an amplifier and connected electronic attachments which simulated echo by means of a tape loop device called an Echoplex. He created alterations of tone color by means of the wah-wah pedal. Miles Davis was the first established jazz artist to begin mixing the musical devices of rock and funk music with those of jazz. Rhythmic styles other than bouncy, swinging jazz patterns occur throughout Bitches Brew. Miles Davis' drummer Tony Williams played repeating eighth notes on the ride cymbal instead of playing the ching chick-a ching pattern. He stated each beat by sharply snapping closed the high-hat, instead of closing it only on every other beat. Bassist Ron Carter complemented those drumming patterns with simple, repeating bass figures that did not fit traditional walking bass rhythms. This evoked a feeling similar to the rhythmic feeling of rock.

Fusion became the first jazz style since the swing era to gain popular acceptance anywhere near the level accorded swing, and it lasted at least as long as the swing era. By incorporating elements of R&B and rock into their music, several established jazz figures achieved popular success that rivaled all the peaks of recognition accorded to jazz players since the end of the swing era's wide appreciation of jazz-oriented band music. This new success for jazz musicians did not depend so much on jazz character as on jazz-rock character. As with swing era big band recordings, those pieces presenting the least improvisation tended to enjoy the most popular acclaim. As with the hits of the swing era, jazz-rock hits were identifiable by simple, repeating riffs syncopated in a catchy way. Much of what went by the jazz-rock label consisted of little more than funky rhythm vamps, elementary chord progressions, and an improvised solo riding on top. This music was so popular that, in addition to the "jazz-rock" and "jazz-fusion" labels, it also acquired the label of "crossover" music because sales of the records crossed over from the jazz market into the popular market. There are several possible explanations for the new popularity of jazz and jazz-rock in particular. Perhaps when jazz adopted the electric instruments and the accompaniment rhythms associated with rock, and rock was so familiar already, the instruments and rhythms provided a bridge of similarity for listeners that eased them into a music that had otherwise been strange and difficult to listen to. A second possibility is that the increased prominence of drums was more inviting to dancers. Third is the relative simplicity of chord progressions found in jazz-rock fusion. The new music was more involved than rock had been, but it was harmonically less complex than other jazz styles. A fourth explanation involves the extensive use of repetition for a single accompaniment pattern. Technically, it is known as ostinato, which means that a particular rhythm or brief melodic figure is repeated continuously. It was fundamental to most of the jazz-rock hits of the 1970s, and its use might explain the enormous popularity of the boogie-woogie style of jazz piano playing during the 1940s. Many of the largest-selling recordings in any category of music are distinguished by their simplicity, rhythmic vitality, and extensive use of repetition. This combination of features could also account for much of jazz-rock's commercial success.

Posted by Roy on Thursday, 07.30.09 @ 09:21am


Basically, Jazz and Rock represent seperate streams in African American music that have occasionally overlapped. Jazz differs from rock in its similar amount of repetition, larger amount of improvisation, greater complexity, and higher musicianship. Chicago and Blood, Sweat and Tears, ought not to be called jazz-rock because they used little improvisation and had more roots in soul music than in rock and roll. They represent amalgamations of existing trends, such as the band styles of James Brown and Ray Charles, rather than a fresh style. The most original fusions of funk and jazz occurred in the band of Miles Davis, and the bands launched by his sidemen. The post-1968 music of Miles Davis displayed a blend of the jazz tradition, funk music, and the music of India and South America. The most prominent jazz-rock guitarists had tone color and rhythmic conception that departed from jazz guitar tradition and drew more from urban blues and rock practices. They were known for playing with phenomenal speed and precision.

Posted by Roy on Friday, 07.31.09 @ 05:10am


Why he was put in as a Performer makes no sense to me(I know Philip has already mentioned this topic though).

Posted by Dude Man on Monday, 08.17.09 @ 21:30pm


Never honestly been a huge fan, strangely enough my favourite from him is Agharta, one of the man's more obscure fusion album, but the likes of Bitches Brew I cannot stomach. Yeah, deserves in for sure, I just find there to be better jazz.

Posted by oosive on Tuesday, 08.18.09 @ 15:13pm


Davis is the only Jazz musician in the RRHOF because of two highly influential albums "In A Silent Way" and "Bitches Brew". Both albums made a major impact on the Jazz/Rock and Fusion movement of the 70's.

Posted by Joe-Skee on Thursday, 12.10.09 @ 11:43am


Davis is the only Jazz musician in the RRHOF because of two highly influential albums "In A Silent Way" and "Bitches Brew". Both albums made a major impact on the Jazz/Rock and Fusion movement of the 70's.

Posted by Joe-Skee on Thursday, 12.10.09 @ 11:43am

Well in that case he should have been inducted as an EARLY INFLUENCE. He fits all the criteria for an EARLY INFLUENCE. He PREDATED Rock & Roll and had influence on later Rock & Roll performers. Why a jazz musician who predated Rock & Roll was inducted into the main performers category (he doesn't even fit the criteria for that category!) is beyond my understanding

Posted by Tahvo Parvianen on Sunday, 05.23.10 @ 05:49am


Tahvo...beats the heck out of me, too. There was nothing remotely "Rock & Roll" about Miles Davis...he was jazz to the bone. I had even heard he wasn't that crazy about rock bands that incorporated horns, either. It's kind of like inducting Bill Monroe into any Hall of Fame associated with rock...he hated it (but he loved the royalty checks that rolled in when people like Elvis did his songs...which he had absolutely nothing to do with that arrangement).

Miles Davis as an influence...absolutely! Bill Monroe as anything...if ever there was an "anti-rock & roll artist", it was him!! Davis is right where he belongs in this Hall, no idea what the "other one" was thinking...

Posted by Gitarzan on Sunday, 05.23.10 @ 07:46am


yeah I actually want to know which Rock & Roll artists cited Bill Monroe as an influence because I did some research on the topic and the closest thing I found to Rock & Roll who claimed to be influenced by Bill Monroe was Doc Watson!! If anybody knows some names please let me know because my research led me to a dead end

I actually like Bill Monroe but I wonder how he would have reacted to discover that he was inducted in any shape or form to a "Rock & Roll" Hall of Fame. Probably would have gone to Cleveland and burnt his exhibition!!

Posted by Tahvo Parvianen on Sunday, 05.23.10 @ 08:22am


Elvis recorded Monroe's 'Blue Moon of Kentucky"...only with a slightly "different" arrangement...

Posted by Gitarzan on Sunday, 05.23.10 @ 08:50am


I can see how that would give Monroe a good bit of influence but do you know if Elvis explicitly said Monroe influenced him or did he just hear "Blue Moon of Kentucky" and think to himself "hey, this could make for a good Rock & Roll track"

I was always under the impression that an artist covering another artist didn't necessarily mean they were influenced by them, they just liked the song. I mean, were The Troggs really influenced by the Wild Ones (written by Chip Taylor) when they recorded "Wild Thing" or Shadows of Knight by Them when they recorded "Gloria" or Judas Priest by Spooky Tooth when they recorded "Better By You, Better Than Me?" (for the record, the Spooky Tooth version is much better IMO)

Posted by Tahvo Parvianen on Sunday, 05.23.10 @ 09:04am


Elvis liked the song, but he was going to do it his way...and it was no secret that Bill Monroe detested Elvis' version (until, like I mentioned, he got his first royalty check which was probably a pretty good chunk of change). "Liking a song" and listing someone as an influence are two completely different things...

Posted by Gitarzan on Sunday, 05.23.10 @ 09:12am


My point exactly

Posted by Tahvo Parvianen on Sunday, 05.23.10 @ 09:30am


Nobody mentioned Miles' Post-Silent Way and Bitches Brew album, A Tribute to Jack Johnson. That album is Miles' real rock moment.

Posted by PLUTO on Sunday, 10.26.14 @ 17:58pm


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