I watched a show about Miles Davis last night, which concentrated on his 38 minute set at the Isle of Wight Festival in 1970 (in front of 600,00 people). Somehow through the years Miles Davis had settled somewhere in the back of my psyche. An influence in the olden days, of course, but one which I rarely thought about anymore. This show brought it all flooding back into my consciousness. The arrogance of critics who hated Miles because he was no longer playing their kind of Jazz (if he was still playing Jazz at all after Isle of Wight).
I needed to see this program. I’ve been full of doubt lately about my own direction. I’ve set aside bass and have picked up guitar. Not just guitar, but acoustic 12-string. I’ve been drawing in a lot of my old influences, such as Howlin’ Wolf, Lead Belly, Muddy Waters and other Blues greats. But I never thought about how old favorites like Miles Davis might apply to what we’re doing with Windhaven. After all, we’re not remotely Jazz, and are only Blues in a passing sense. But I’ve been so focused on trying to figure out how we can be something that the masses (and local club owners) would want to pay for that I had sort of forgotten that the only thing that really matter, in the end, is the music itself.