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Kind of Blue

Kind of Blue

4.8 53
by Miles Davis

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Kind of magnificent! Kind of Blue has been called the greatest jazz album ever made so often that you're reluctant to believe it. Believe it. Five songs -- "So What," "Freddie Freeloader," "Blue in Green," "All Blues," and "Flamenco Sketches" -- four of them hovering around 10 minutes (taking advantage of the still-recent LP format) , and every one


Kind of magnificent! Kind of Blue has been called the greatest jazz album ever made so often that you're reluctant to believe it. Believe it. Five songs -- "So What," "Freddie Freeloader," "Blue in Green," "All Blues," and "Flamenco Sketches" -- four of them hovering around 10 minutes (taking advantage of the still-recent LP format) , and every one a masterpiece. Recorded in 1959 at a pivot point in jazz history --improvising over chords was giving way to the album's pioneering use of improvising over scales (or modes), and the abstractions of the '60s were brewing -- it includes everything good about the past 40 years and presages everything good about the next 40. Cool, calm, and concise, with some of jazz's most influential figures at their most potent (including Bill Evans, who also wrote the excellent liner notes, John Coltrane, and Cannonball Adderley), Kind of Blue is perfection. The latest reissue has better sound, extra liner notes, and an alternate take of "Flamenco Sketches." All unnecessary.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide
Kind of Blue isn't merely an artistic highlight for Miles Davis, it's an album that towers above its peers, a record generally considered as the definitive jazz album. To be reductive, it's the Citizen Kane of jazz - an accepted work of greatness that's innovative and entertaining. That may not mean it's the greatest jazz album ever made, but it certainly is a universally acknowledged standard of excellence. Why does Kind of Blue posses such a mystique? Perhaps it's that this music never flaunts its genius. It lures listeners in with the slow, luxurious bass line and gentle piano chords of "So What." From that moment on, the record never really changes pace -- each tune has a similar relaxed feel, as the music flows easily. Yet Kind of Blue is more than easy listening. It's the pinnacle of modal jazz -- tonality and solos build from chords, not the overall key, giving the music a subtly shifting quality. All of this doesn't quite explain why seasoned jazz fans return to this record even after they've memorized every nuance. They return because this is an exceptional band - Miles, Coltrane, Bill Evans, Cannonball Adderly, Paul Chambers, Jimmy Cobb -- one of the greatest in history, playing at the peak of its power. As Evans said in the original liner notes for the record, the band did not play through any of these pieces prior to recording. Davis laid out the themes and chords before the tape rolled, and then the band improvised. The end results were wondrous, filled with performances that still crackle with vitality. Few albums of any genre manage to work on so many different levels, but Kind of Blue does. It can be played as background music, yet it amply rewards close listening. It is advanced music that is extraordinarily enjoyable. It may be a stretch to say that if you don't like Kind of Blue, you don't like jazz -- but it's hard to imagine it as anything other than a cornerstone of any jazz collection. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine

Product Details

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Miles Davis   Primary Artist,Trumpet,Leader
Cannonball Adderley   Alto Saxophone
Bill Evans   Piano
Wynton Kelly   Piano
Jimmy Cobb   Drums
Paul Chambers   Bass,Double Bass
John Coltrane   Tenor Saxophone

Technical Credits

Robert Palmer   Liner Notes
Bill Evans   Composer,Liner Notes,Original Liner Notes
Steven Berkowitz   Reissue Series
Michael Cuscuna   Reissue Producer
Kevin Gore   Reissue Series
Nat Hentoff   Liner Notes
Larry Keyes   Producer
Teo Macero   Producer
Fred Plaut   Engineer
Irving Townsend   Audio Production
Mark Wilder   Engineer,Remixing
Cozbi Sanchez-Cabrera   Art Direction
Jay Maisel   Cover Photo
Randall Martin   Reissue Design
Robert Palmer   Liner Notes
Jennifer Ebert   Packaging Manager

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Kind of Blue [Columbia Jazz Masterpieces] 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 53 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
while this is one of the quitessential jazz albums of all time, it is also a perfect introduction to jazz for the unititiated.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This album is a legendary muse of history in its own right! Before I decided to buy this album, I have read the book, The Making of Kind of Blue, and read many reviews from critics, and even asked for some opionions about it to family and friends. The results of such a great, profounding explosion inspired me to buy this album. The first moment i heard it, the music became the painter and my mind became the canvas. Many pictures of night lights, bright stars, starry eyed couples, lonely, sad people, nature, and majestic, somewhat peaceful, quiet, and melancholy places started performing in my mind! This album truly has a voice that's louder than the sights of all the world! It truly has something, not just extraordinary people, such as the famous John Coltrane, Bill Evans, and of course the eat-your-heart-out-choir-music passionate Miles Davis. It's simply the wonder, the power, and the calling muse of the miseries, the pain, the majesty, the thought, the heaven, and the glory of it all, which makes it definitive, an art for all jazz mankind. No album in the world could grow as beautiful as this piece of heaven coming from a horn so sweet.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Mickey52 More than 1 year ago
I was having a hard time trying to think of all the wonderful things to say about this amazing classic album, and I suddenly realised how easy it was... The editorial review says that ''Kind of Blue'' has been called the greatest jazz album of all time so often that it's hard to believe it. It's perfectly simple; all you have to do is listen to it. You'll believe it -- because it's true.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is by far, not only the greatest Miles Davis album... but the greatest jazz album ever made. Miles Davis' smokey, yet sexy, trumpet playing is at it's peak in every chart on the album... from the mild-paced "Freddie Freeloader" to the slow, and my personal favorite, "Blue In Green." This album, itself, revolutionized jazz from the begining... This is a must have!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just brought home the SACD version of this lovely thing, and cannot believe the lifelike sound quality that was captured during the 1959 recording sessions. Truly amazing and actually puts many records since its time to shame, simply talking recording fidelity here. The actual art contained here, having not heard it before and purchased on the recommendation from an online review, has me floored and excited to spend much, much quality time with Miles and friends. I'm sure this disc is going to be spinning alot for a long time to come. If you haven't given this a chance yet, you are truly missing a big chance to be very, very impressed with something. This is one of the very few purchases I've made that have actually exceeded my expectations.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I know little but I know that this is ... something else! Welcome to Scotland - not yet free - but GLORY we will be soon ( there's one one distance MILES - that's the road and the Miles .....)
vantoth More than 1 year ago
Absolutely wonderful
Guest More than 1 year ago
Whoever out there thinks that Miles Davis is just an electronica nutjob drughead must not have ever laid eyes (or ears) on ''Kind of Blue''. This is some of the best jazz that I have ever heard.
Guest More than 1 year ago
To many people this is the quintessential jazz recording. I cant argue. Every time I listen to it I find something new and interesting within the performances. Everyone else has said what needs to be said about this album. For those who don't get it...take some time out of your day, turn off the lights, and just listen to the album.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I do not really understand the musical concepts behind this album (tonalities vs scales, etc). All I understand is that I can put this CD in my player, press repeat, and let it play for hours and I still never tire of this music. Miles, Coltrane, and Adderly take turns with blistering solos, almost as if it is a duel! Each soloist throws down the gauntlet for the next and the challenge is met each time. This is an album for all time. There is only one bonus track because this is the only one that was finished during those sessions. The remastering is an incredible leap over the original CD release with recording speeds corrected on side 1 and adding a great deal of initimacy and warmth. Do yourself a favor and buy this one if you haven't already.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I always hated jazz, then my brother sent me this album and said 'give it a chance.' The more I listen to it, the more it grows on me. This is simply amazing music. If I had to sum it up in one word: 'mellow.'
Guest More than 1 year ago
Well, not that it hasn't been said already, but this is quite easily one of, if not the most, meaningful jazz albums ever made. Each chart is highly accessible, making this album perfect for someone who wants an introduction to jazz; furthermore, every member of Miles' group is a jazz superstar in his own right. "So What" often gets the most attention, but my favorite chart (of all time, perhaps) is "All Blues". Miles really knows how to create an ambience, and the solos are beautiful. Enjoy what drummer Jimmy Cobb calls an album "made in heaven".
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is probably the most overrated Miles Davis album, but I do love it. Miles and his band play the songs by ear and the music is really relaxing. ''So What'' is indeed one of his best songs ever. ''All Blues'' is a cool blues number. One thing I like about the reissue is that when the album was originally released, it was taped slowly so it had a sharper pitch. But on this reissue, they speed the tapes up so you can hear the actual sound of the music when it was recorded. I really like jazz and this is one of my desert island discs.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I bought this album in that year 1959. I was a Junior in high school. Most of the Jazz set on campus obtained this record. My music teacher, after allowing me to play it during Music Appreciation and hearing it asked me if he could borrow it overnight. He returned it the next morning and told everone in the classroom to purchase this record by Miles Davis and put it in their home library even if they were not into Jazz like he and I were. I certainly appreciate the new CD sound. It was often a common site to see other students carrying this record along with their books a year later '60.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i like this music from start to finish you cant get much better than this one...
Guest More than 1 year ago
Just plan hard to beat
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was one of the first jazz cd's I ever bought and I never get tired of listening to it. Certainly one of the greatest jazz albums ever, performed by an all-star line up of artists. The only problem a beginner to jazz might have buying this is pretty much anything collected after this will seem a bit lame.
Colleen_OMalley More than 1 year ago
I have been a lover of Jazz since childhood. This is my favorite recording. Miles Davis and John Coltrane just compliment each other so well. You can drift with the music and get lost. This is a must for any jazz lover. Yet, it is a great place to start if you are trying to sample the genre for the first time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Regardless of the kind of music you prefer, Kind of Blue is an essential experience to include in any well-rounded, respectable music collection. Listen to it and it will be with you for a long time to come. The ultimate challenge for an artist is to articulate that which is hardest to express. Miles is playing for you. He is etching out your insides. He is answering questions you can't even articulate. But he was just a regular guy which makes his music all the more amazing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this jazz is the greatest ever heard to man, or its the greatest album of all time. Pick one.
Starmom More than 1 year ago
I could listen to this album over and over again. Every track is fantastic and showcases Miles' mastery of the horn. 100 years from now people will be in awe.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This music connects me with my beginnings, my heritage.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This album is a classic, and is very beautiful in so many ways! THis is the #1 jazz album of all time...and its easy to see why. I find myself listening to this record over and over..timeless masterpiece...if you don't own this album...your really missing out on a classic!