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Miles Davis - Kind Of Blue CD (album) cover


Miles Davis


Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.34 | 1049 ratings

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5 stars Is this the piece of vinyl that "started it all"? Does "progressive" jazz = progressive rock? One of the first superstar bands (though several of these artists were not yet stars much less superstars), Julian "Cannonball" Adderly, John Coltrane, Wynton Kelly, Paul Chambers, Jimmy Cobb, and a very young and precocious Bill Evans--along with their leader, Miles Davis--would all be welcomed into the membership of the pantheon of Jazz's all-time greats--and this album may be jazz's most recognized album worldwide. I don't remember how I was introduced to Kind of Blue. I know I had been intrigued by the prospect of listening to Miles Davis for some time due to the always raving reviews Rolling Stone Magazine would give every one of his albums throughout the 1970s. But my introduction to jazz was through a kind of back door: Jazz Rock (Chicago, Rare Earth, Blood Sweat and Tears), Jazz Fusion (Return to Forever, Weather Report, Chick Corea, Pat Metheny), Pop Jazz (Manhattan Transfer, Najee, Rickie Lee Jones, Joni Mitchell, Dave Gruisin, Tom Scot, Earl Klugh, Kenny G), and even some of the minimalist/New Age fusion artists (Windham Hill label artists like George Winston, Will Ackerman, Shadowfax, Darryl Anger, as well as Vangelis, and Manfred Eicher's ECM label artists like Keith Jarrett, Gary Burton, Pat Metheny, Eberhard Weber, and Jan Garbarek) were my entry point to jazz. The first "hardcore" artists and albums I tried were either mistakes or as result of Bertrand TAVERNIER's incredible 1986 film, Round Midnight. The soundtrack to this album contained a veritable Who's Who of Jazz with Dexter Gordon, Herbie Hancock, John McLAughlin, Freddie Hubbard, Ron Carter, Tony Williams, Bobby McFerrin, Pierre Michelot, Billy Higgins, Chet Baker, Bobby Hutcherson, Wayne Shorter, Lonette McKee, and Cedar Walton. After seeing Round Midnight I felt like I had been schooled--like I finally "got it"--I kind of understand what jazz was about. So I went on a binge of buying albums by all of the above artists, as well as many of the more classic albums by or featuring Oscar Peterson, Thelonius Monk, Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, Charles Mingus, Cole Porter, George Gershwin, John Coltrane, and, yes, even Miles Davis. Now I remember! It was stumbling upon so many references to the great late Bill Evans (including John McLaughlin's AMAZING tribute album to Bill) that I was led to Kind of Blue! I had purchased and fallen in love with anything Bill EVANS had touched in his early Trio formats--especially the Scott LaFARO stuff and Village Vanguard recordings--when I was directed back--back to Kind of Blue. That song, "Blue in Green" kept appearing on other people's albums and was haunting me. To hear one of the original recordings of it was blissful. And then, to be preceded by such amazing'y beautiful pieces as "So What?" and "Freddie Freeloader" was icing on the cake! And THEN! To discover that Side Two, with "All Blues" and the sublime late night classic, "Flamenco Sketches," was even better! I was in heaven! And this after forays into Sketches in Spain and Giant Steps had shown me that I was still too immature and uneducated to dive into jazz's headier stuff. Kind of Blue was, and still is, for me the finest jazz album I've ever heard. Probably cuz I'm a melody guy, a romantic, and a laid back late night music listener. For me this is without question or hesitation a five star album. Whether or not it belongs in the ProgArchives database is another issue . . . .
BrufordFreak | 5/5 |


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