Culture / Music

Miles Davis and Frank Sinatra: Similar Greatness

From checking out various articles and books, I am aware that Miles Davis and Frank Sinatra had met over the years. How friendly they were with one another I have no clue, but no doubt there was mutual respect.

I continue trying to locate a photograph of the two icons together.

The musical and cultural parallels between Miles Davis and Frank Sinatra are interesting subjects to explore. I would invite anyone to jump further into this discussion by checking out a terrific web article from Jon Wertheim.

Wertheim, a jazz critic who writes at his personal website and sometimes at Nextbop.com, writes of the Sinatra-Davis connection:

The parallels exist in lifestyle and music. Both created a marketable image that listeners wanted to be a part of – Frank, the fabulously wealthy California playboy, and Miles, the fabulously wealthy new black celebrity – and both took advantage of the microphone as a way to communicate intimately with the audience.

They also realized the importance of not only a signature look and manner but also a signature sound – the fact that their personal sound stayed constant was highlighted and accentuated by long periods of constant accompaniment, Miles with his great quintets/sextet and Frank with his long-term arrangers, especially Billy May and Nelson Riddle.

So while I continue to track down a photo of Miles Davis and Frank Sinatra, read Jon Wertheim’s Frank Sinatra And Miles Davis about what is a fascinating musical parallel between two titans of music and culture.

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One thought on “Miles Davis and Frank Sinatra: Similar Greatness

  1. I know they were reported hanging out at Jilly’s together as mentioned by the great Jazz pianist Monty Alexander in a memoir. I also know that Sinatra had a painting of Miles in his Palm Springs house and in a discussion with a weekend visitor (Bono) reportedly told Bono that “Miles never wasted a note or word on a fool”. That definitely sounds something Sinatra would say.

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