“But it was at the Three Deuces, playing every night there with Bird and Max, that really helped me find my own voice.”
— Miles Davis (excerpt from Miles: The Autobiography)
In 1944 Miles Davis moved to New York to study in the Julliard School of Music. His tenure would only last a few months. Instead he sought a musical education in the clubs of 52nd Street with musicians like Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie. Davis soon joined Parker’s group at the Three Deuces club in 1945 and in the recording studio.
It was soon after that Davis would make his first recordings as a band leader, which featured Parker, pianist John Lewis, and drummer Max Roach.
Photographer William P. Gottlieb captured some memorable images from those days and the photograph above is recognizable to jazz fans: Charlie Parker, Tommy Potter, Miles Davis, and Max Roach at the Three Deuces, New York, N.Y., August 1947.
I’ve brought up the issue of who should play Charlie Parker, but I can only assume this point in Davis’ life (and career) would rate high on the scale of important scenes for the Miles Davis film – regardless of what narrative style Don Cheadle decides to map out for the Biopic.
Not only can the audience get introduced to a number of famous jazz musicians, but the Three Deuces setting provides an ideal opportunity for a musical sequence.