Thursday, September 15, 2005

Kind Of Blue (part 3b)

this is an audio post - click to play
Here's a sample of "So What," the first track off of Miles Davis' landmark jazz album, Kind Of Blue.
What differences do you hear between Ellington & Davis?


Blogger Pete Gall said...

Duke's more statement than conversation, and it feels more like he's saying the "right" things - playing like he's supposed to play.

Miles sets up with more of a "come sit here with me" (I picture slouching on an elevated train like they have in Chicago), and something about the rumble and the motion of the ride - which sounds like it's going somewhere, but certainly doesn't sound like it's any sort of special trip - makes the person beside him start to talk (just before half-way on the sample). And the companion "talks," a subtle support plays around - like other people nodding and saying "uh huh" here and there. They get it. They feel it being on that train with him.

I think what I find most telling - most exciting - about Miles vs. Duke is how Miles starts with nothing big. Emotionally it's the difference between a lunch with someone who doesn't ask the real "how are you" until it's too late to give an answer before the time is up (Duke), and someone who sits down and is present - really there with you - and doesn't really care much about the false self you spend most of your day living behind.

Place. Ordinary. Real.

Uh...listening to the other person on the train...or at lunch...hmm....

12:13 PM  
Blogger olympiada said...

Awesome track. Aw man...I want my sax back! I want jazz band back! I want Sutter Sugar back, my stupid high school jazz boyfriend...This ain't fair...I hate being a grown up.

Hey, how did you get that clip on there?

12:58 PM  
Blogger olympiada said...

Davis is more modern, I like him better, he jives with me more.

1:01 PM  
Blogger jazztheo said...

Good distinctions Pete.

They are both beautiful. Duke's is absolutely captivating as the song builds and when it's over, your not ready for it to end. But it's also very formal compared to Miles.

Kind of Blue feels familiar. It has a lot of space...that's what I like about has room for something to happen.

That's the way I like church.

6:48 PM  

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