2012 45¢ Miles Davis
Issue Date: June 12, 2012
City: New York, NY
Printed By: Avery Dennison
Printing Method: Photogravure
Perforations: Die Cut 10 3/4
By continually reinventing his technique, Miles Davis became one of the most influential jazz musicians of all time. In a career spanning 50 years, Davis (1926-91) left his fingerprint on every major development in jazz since the 1940s.
After dropping out of the Juilliard School of Music, Davis found his niche playing jam sessions in Harlem nightclubs. Adding a relaxed, melodic approach to bebop, Davis introduced the “cool jazz” movement with his album, Birth of the Cool.
His “Hard Bop” period coincided with a tour in Paris, where Davis enjoyed more respect than black musicians experienced in the U.S. In 1959, his Kind of Blue was recorded. The album became the best-selling jazz record of all time and was proclaimed a national treasure by the U.S. House of Representatives. Davis experimented with electric instruments, jazz fusion, and funk until the 70s, when he began to suffer health issues so severe that Rolling Stone magazine reported he was on his deathbed.
Davis rallied, rekindled his romance with actress Cicely Tyson, and conquered a drug addiction. Released in 1986, his album Tutu won a Grammy, which was followed by a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1990. The next year, a stroke silenced the man who had changed jazz music forever.