Miles on Bird

The quote is from Miles Davis’ autobiography, where he reminisces about seeing his idol, Charlie Parker, in the flesh for the first time.

In 1944 a teenaged Davis, freshly arrived in New York, spent months scouring the city’s clubs, looking for his idol. When Davis eventually found Parker, he was shocked at how bedraggled his hero looked irl. Miles was asked to join the band and the rest is history‚Ķ

The second photo is from the famed bebop concert at Carnegie Hall in 1947, which was a turning point in the way bebop was viewed.

I couldn’t find an attribution for the first photo, so if anyone knows that would be brilliant. Cut off by the text blocks are Thelonius Monk, Charlie Mingus and Roy Haynes. Quite the super group!

In The Mobster’s Lament, Parker’s quintet from 1947 makes a cameo appearance. This was another super-group line up: it included the young Miles Davis, Duke Jordan, Tommy Potter and Max Roach


Tim Clifford got in contact to attribute the first photo. Turns out it’s a really famous photo by Bob Parent which I’m ashamed to say I wasn’t aware of. Tim forwarded a New York Times article all about the photo. The article is titled ‘Is This The Greatest Photo in Jazz History?’

Massive thanks to Tim for supplying the missing information, and the link!

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