Miles and Kilometers

The Hand of Miles Davis by Irving PennAll summer Nicky had been asking me if I wanted to go check out the Miles Davis exhibit at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. And all summer she’s been bailing on me. This past Sunday, she didn’t cancel for a change and we went. Finally!

The exhibit was an awesome trip through the career of Miles Davis. Each room showcased the highlights of his creative output which were accompanied by the sounds of some of his most famous recordings.

Yet throughout the exhibit, I couldn’t help but be reminded of that SNL bit by Zach Galifianakis where he refers to Davis’ first name as a measurement.

So I say, “You know, in Canada, they called him Kilometers Davis.”
“Get it? Kilometers Davis?”
“I get it.”
“You know, because of the Metric System?? MILES…KILOMETERS?!”


Anyway, when exhibiting a musician, it’s tricky to include the music without it being overbearing and disjointed. So it was interesting that even though each room was playing a different piece from Miles’ career, the transition was very smooth. Walking room to room was like following a musical thread through 40’s jazz and smoothly into 70’s fusion.

There were also many album covers, photographs, and some gorgeous trumpets on display. They even had a 1970 Gibson SG six string just sitting there! I asked Nicky and her Farmville Friend to distract the guard while I took it to “get it tuned”, but they said we’d get “arrested”. Boring.

basquiat horn players 1983When they ran out of jazz paraphernalia to display, they put up a few paintings by the late artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, the most topical one being the Horn Players. Basquiat was well known for his Graffiti style, which Nicky said that she’d seen a similar style, if not more refined, in the art work of her 3 year old.

We laughed because, sure, anyone can paint like that!

Then while acting like the Philistines that we are, we remembered what our logo looks like here at WWFC, and suddenly we ‘got it’. Mostly.

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  • sounds like an awesome exhibit. i so love miles davis and john coltrane’s music. pure genius 🙂

  • Mikewj

    I’d have made a dash for the exit with that Gibson, too. That was the guitar of choice for a lot of mid-70s metal bands. I guess it looks wicked or something, especially in black. I’ve long wanted a mid-50s Gibson f-hole arch top electric jazz guitar. Even if I never play it, I’d like to hang it on the wall and just look at it. Beautiful!rnrnI’m glad you Philistines had a good time, but it does raise a question: Are you her man, or is that somebody else? I don’t know why I never thought of it before.

  • Hey, I only bailed once and it wasn’t even me, it was my Facebook friend! Ya big baby 🙂

  • Mike is not my man. He is a man, but not mine. He is my best friend though, when he’s not being a big baby.

  • Don’t you mean “Farmville Friend”?

  • It was really great. I’m generally not a fan of brass instruments, but the way Miles played them was beyond compare. I love the fact that he constantly pushed the envelope.

  • Yep, Thanks to Robbie Krieger, Tony Iommi and Jimmy Page (double neck), the SG is usually associated with Rock and Metal. Oh yeah, Angus Young too.nnI would loooove to have one of those Gibson f-hole arch tops. If you ever get one, give me a shout and I can come by to pick it up and get it tuned.

  • Why are all these comments repeating a whole bunch of times? It’s distracted me from what I was going to post so now I have to come back later. Fix it Mike!

  • Why are all these comments repeating a whole bunch of times? It’s distracted me from what I was going to post so now I have to come back later. Fix it Mike!

  • MikeWJ brings up an interesting question.

  • MikeWJ brings up an interesting question.

  • Why are my comments not copying a bunch of times?

  • Why are my comments not copying a bunch of times?

  • Whatever. It was her fault. Big baby.

  • That was weird. I had to re-sync Disqus and now it seems to be OK on the front end. On the back end there are tons of duplicates. Freakin’ Disqus…

  • Disqus is totally messing with us and it’s pissing me off!

  • He did, and Nicky posted the answer. I’m A man, but not HER man. However, I’m still The Man.

  • Mikewj

    Hey, thanks for your helpful offer, CheesyMike. I really appreciate it.rnrnNow leave my Gibson alone and fuck off.

  • Mikewj

    Please tell us more about all the ways CheesyMike is a big baby. I love to hear stories about men who act like 3-year-olds.

  • Mikewj

    I thought I was The Man.rnrnI’m so confused.rnrnYou can’t have it, but would like to borrow my Gibson f-hole arch top?

  • There. You’ve succeeded in making me choke on my iced tea.nnWell done! 😀

  • I’d love to borrow it, forever!

  • You do? Well then, CheesyMike is definitely your go-to guy for stories like that. For example, this one time, at band camp…

  • You are NOT telling those stories! First of all, I never went to band camp, although I did go to camp, and I’ve been in several bands. nnBut not at the same time!

  • Jepeto

    Somebody called?

  • You just have to start trouble wherever you go, don’t you, Mike.

  • Nothing like those old Gibsons. Brings back so great musical memories from that time.

  • Is this still goofy?

  • Is this still goofy?

  • Mikewj

    Jayne, I prefer to think that I’m making trouble, but bringing transparency and openness to the blogging process.rnrnAnd CheesyMike, it’s okay that you went to band camp. I realize that you may have done some things there that you’re deeply ashamed of. But just because you put a trombone in your mouth one time, doesn’t mean you’re a trombone player for the rest of your life, if you get my drift.

  • Mikewj

    I mean “I prefer to think I’m NOT making trouble….”

  • What I fantastic exhibit. I love Miles Davis. And I love wonderful old instruments! Sweet!

  • Mike, Baby, you’ve gone kywacky again. S’up Honey?

  • Mike, Baby, you’ve gone kywacky again. S’up Honey?

  • I don’t get it. I’ve never even held a trombone. Have you? Is that why they call you BonyMike? nnOr is it TrombonyMike?

  • It’s gone all weird. The comments that you couldn’t post don’t have your avatar. And it only seemed to happen to you. Very odd.

  • Music memory is a very powerful thing!

  • Mikewj

    It’s an obscure reference to an old joke about the lingering effects of a person’s misguided college experimentation with alternative lifestyles.rnrnAnd, no, I’ve never touched a trombone. I’m BonyMike because I’m a skeleton, dude. And also because…oh, never mind.

  • You get the cool award…. Miles Davis!!! My Dad loved him… I bet that was a really great exhibit!

  • Kilometers Davis…. hahahahahaha! I know, I’m lame, but whatever. that was funny. sounds like a good place to visit. Perhaps next time I’m in Canadia Land and going to Montreal, I will pop in to visit old Kilometers Davis and his fancy museum.

  • Oh, if you are coming to Montreal, you’ll have to let us know!!

  • James and I will be coming to Montreal sometime in the next few months for our Visa interview at the consulate. I will let you guys know when!

  • It was awesome, and Miles was just so…indescribable. I do love me some museum time!

  • Okay, “Kilometers Davis” cracked me up!

  • It’s hilarious! I really wish I had come up with that one.

  • Me too!

  • Miles Davis and Dr. Seuss (Theodor Geisel) died on the same day. One of our Toronto newspaper cartoonists showed them both meeting in heaven, pointing to each other, and saying: “So you’re the cat in the hat.”nnSounds like a great exhibit.

  • It really was, Frank. Now I have to go scour the web for that comic 😀


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