A sense of the possible: Miles Davis and the semiotics of improvised performance

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Date: Fall 1995
From: TDR (Cambridge, Mass.)(Vol. 39, Issue 3)
Publisher: MIT Press Journals
Document Type: Article
Length: 6,200 words

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Abstract :

Miles Davis was one of the most influential jazz musicians of the 20th century because he was able to draw out of other musicians a 'sense of the possible.' He worked within an improvisational format, but had set gestures that could elicit certain threads of music such as intimacy, humor and failure. He did this by creating a ritual space that encouraged ambiguity and performing without a script. He sought the continuous present. The difficulties in analyzing improvisational work are addressed.

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A17428997