My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die
Brief Background: Recorded and released in 1959, Kind of Blue is the second Miles Davis album to be featured on this blog. In Contrast to the hard bop style of Birth of the Cool, this album is a recording of modal style jazz. The album is believed to be the best selling jazz album of all time. The five songs were essentially improvised in the studio by all the players except Davis, who provided the rest of the musicians with only outlines for which to play the songs.
What I liked: I have more of a history with this album than any other album I’ve addressed so far in this blog. Over the last couple of years I’ve listened to it many times as an attempt to “get into” this music they call jazz. I remember the first time I listened to “So What” I thought it sounded like they were warming up for the whole track (and the whole album in general). In a funny twist, that along with “Freddie Freeloader” are now my two favorite tracks on the album, but….
What I Didn’t Like: I still really haven’t gotten into this jazz stuff, but it has grown on me. “Blue in Green” is my least favorite on the album as it sounds to me like the smooth jazz that plays in the background of the local forecast on The Weather Channel.
My Overall Thoughts: While the album no longer feels like a warm up for the band, it’s not something I can listen to straight through. When the songs come up individually on a playlist, I let them play and typically enjoy them, but I don’t seek them out. It also impresses me immensely that these six musicians can essentially improvise ten minutes pieces and make them sound as they do.
Do I agree or disagree with the writers as to this being an album you must listen to? The album has such a huge reputation as being one of the best ever, so even though I don’t hold it those high regards, I do believe it should be here.
Rating (Out of 5): 3
Amazon Review (Out of 5):4.5
Is this my first time hearing this album? No (21/24)
Percentage of Albums that are new to me: 88%