1950’s Jazz


Miles Davis: Kind of Blue (1959)

During the 1950’s one of the most known musicians was Miles Davis. He was one of the most innovative and influential musician of the 20th century. Especially for jazz. He worked with well-known musicians such as John Coltrane, Bill Evans, and many others. I would say he was one of the most important musicians for the improvising of jazz at the time. He was also an outstanding trumpet player and composer.

Davis’s album Kind of Blue that was released was known to be not only his best album, but also one of the best albums of jazz music. This album contained five songs. Three of them were moody and slow jazz music. The other two songs were jumpier and also leaning more towards that positive mood. The album starts off with “So What”, with the bass and the piano as the introduction of the beginning of the first song. It gives a interesting, yet mysterious feel. Honestly, it reminded me of the beginnings of the old James Bond movies. It totally fits to be the background music during Bond’s crazy spy adventures exploring around dangerous places.

The second track is actually one of my favorite tracks from this album. It is a piece that may show up in a musical that would take place in the 1930’s or 1940’s. While listening to this song, a scene for the musical Singing in the Rain just popped up in my head. This track gives a feeling of sadness in the beginning with the trumpet. It’s a story of a young man, feeling down due to discouragement. As he walks down the streets, he thought it over and has hope again. Everything would turn out fine. As more instruments join, the rhythm and the flow of the song changes.

In my opinion, music during the early and mid 1900’s was the time when music starts to change and improve. Many great musicians appeared then. Miles Davis was one of them. At the time, many very nice songs did not contain lyrics. I really like that because sometimes when there are lyrics, we get distracted and focus on the lyrics too much. There we sometimes don’t think too much of the music itself. Davis approach in for this jazz album received many positive comments and reviews. It’s still one of the best jazz albums today. Even now, he’s praised for his contributions to the history of jazz and how it also influenced the other genres of music today.