Miles Davis  

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Miles Dewey Davis III (May 26, 1926 – September 28, 1991) was an American jazz musician, widely considered one of the most influential of the 20th century. A trumpeter, bandleader and composer, Davis was at the forefront of almost every major development in jazz from World War II to the 1990s. He played on various early bebop records and recorded one of the first cool jazz records. He was partially responsible for the development of modal jazz, and jazz fusion arose from his work with other musicians in the late 1960s and early 1970s.


Studio albums


Prior to Birth of the Cool his appearances on record were mainly as a member of bebop saxophonist Charlie Parker's quintet. Most of his recordings with Parker are available in Parker’s Savoy and Dial box sets – other recordings, such as live albums, are listed below. Note that Parker was the leader on all of these sessions with the exception of the August 14, 1947 session, Davis’ first as a leader.

The 12" 33 r.p.m. long-playing vinyl record did not become common until the middle of the 1950s. Most of Davis's early recordings were made for 10" or 7" releases with a shorter playing time, and were subsequently reissued as long-playing albums which sometimes combined several recording sessions, and sometimes split sessions between albums. Generally, modern CD reissues reflect the track listing of the 12" LPs, and these are listed here. Years listed for albums are recording dates, not the year of release, as most Davis historical discographies in print and on the Internet are in fact not discographies at all but sessionographies, inclusion of the exact original release date in terms of day and month for Davis albums apparently, and erroneously, viewed as unimportant.

A good portion of this material was recorded for Prestige Records - for more details of the complicated history of the Prestige material, see the Prestige Equivalents section of the Miles Ahead database. Miles Davis is the leader of all of these sessions, unless otherwise indicated.

Columbia, 1955-1975

Recordings for Columbia Records, during what is generally considered to be the most artistically and financially successful period of Davis's career. Again, years shown are for the recordings, though albums were usually released soon after recording.


After his five year retirement, Davis recorded initially for Columbia, and from the end of 1985 (Tutu onwards) for Warner Bros. Records.

As sideman

Template:Expand-section With Cannonball Adderley

With Quincy Jones

Live recordings


  • 1958 Miles (1958 - tracks from Jazz Track and Jazz at the Plaza)
  • Basic Miles (collects works from 1958-1962)
  • Facets (ca. 1973 - previously issued and unissued recordings from 1955-1963)
  • Circle in the Round (1979 - previously unissued recordings from 1955-1970)
  • Directions (1980 - previously unissued recordings from 1960-1970)
  • Mellow Miles (1985)
  • The Columbia Years (1990 - four CD set of recordings from 1955-1985)
  • The Essential Miles Davis (2001) (Legacy Recordings)
  • Cool & Collected (2006) (Legacy Recordings)

Box sets

Davis's early recordings for Prestige records are collected on Chronicle: The Prestige Recordings 1951-1956. Columbia records has released a series of eleven box sets containing recordings from the 1950s to the 1970s. These contain material not available on other Columbia albums (and in the case of Someday My Prince Will Come and the albums recorded after A Tribute to Jack Johnson, there are studio recordings not included in the boxes). The boxes were released between 1996 and 2007 (sequence below listed out of order of release - #2 was first, #8 was last - years shown are the dates of the recordings). Three of the box sets contain live material from specific dates. Although they are released in a box with the same distinctive design as the others, they are not part of the numbered sequence.

Numbered box sets:

  1. The Complete Columbia Recordings of Miles Davis with John Coltrane (1955-1961)
  2. Miles Davis & Gil Evans: The Complete Columbia Studio Recordings (1957-1968)
  3. Seven Steps: The Complete Columbia Recordings of Miles Davis 1963-1964
  4. The Complete Studio Recordings Of The Miles Davis Quintet 1965-1968
  5. The Complete In a Silent Way Sessions (1968-1969)
  6. The Complete Bitches Brew Sessions (1969-1970)
  7. The Complete Jack Johnson Sessions (1970)
  8. The Complete On the Corner Sessions (1972-1975)

Live box sets:

  1. In Person Friday and Saturday Nights at the Blackhawk, Complete (1961)
  2. The Complete Live at the Plugged Nickel 1965 (1965)
  3. The Cellar Door Sessions (1970)


  • Miles Electric: A Different Kind of Blue (2004, DVD - contains complete 38-minute Isle of Wight Festival performance, August 29, 1970)
  • The Miles Davis Story (2001, Channel Four Television Limited (UK); 2002, DVD) US distribution: Columbia Music Video
  • Miles Davis - Live In Montreal 1985 (2000, starring John Scofield, Miles Davis; directed by Tom O'Neill)
  • Miles Davis - Miles In Paris 1989

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Miles Davis" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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