Over Miles Davis
Arguably, no single artist has changed the face of modern music so profoundly, and so many times, as Miles Davis. As Charlie "Yardbird" Parker was busy revolutionizing the jazz world with his stripped-down, freewheeling style called Bop, he invited the young Davis to join him in the mid-1940s. Miles played with Bird for three years before going on to wage his own Cool Jazz revolution, fronting a nine-piece ensemble and creating lush, orchestral arrangements for Birth of the Cool. Due to drug addiction, a fallow period ensued in the early '50s, but Davis returned to the fore with renewed vigor and a new quintet in 1954. The Miles Davis Quintet, including John Coltrane on tenor sax, set new standards for what jazz could represent, achieving a popularity previously thought unattainable in the eclectic realm of jazz. Further milestones lay ahead for Davis -- his groundbreaking orchestral work with his musical soul mate Gil Evans, the recording of the most popular jazz album ever (Kind of Blue), further endeavors with another pivotal quintet in the '60s and finally, the fathering of the Free Improvisation and Funk-tinged riffs and grooves of the Fusion age with Bitches Brew. Through it all, Davis was the consummate professional and master innovator, never pausing to look back while constantly building upon his notoriously irrepressible momentum.