"But Miles never judged it—he just heard it as a sound that had happened..."
One of my fave artists is Herbie Hancock, he's a risk taker and an invovator. One of his biggest influences is the #Legend that is Miles Davis.
Last night & today in class I shared a powerful story about a great lesson Miles taught a young 20 year old Herbie Hancock. This set the tone for the work we did today in class.
Herbie Hancock in his 20's was playing Piano for Miles Davis. One night in Sweden, the band was tight. Everything was flowing & the crowd was going nuts. Toward the end of the night Miles is leading up to his big solo in his track "So What", as he's building the solo, he takes a breath. In that Pause Herbie lays down a chord that was so wrong.
Excerpt from Book "Possiblities":
“Miles pauses for a fraction of a second, and then he plays some notes that somehow, miraculously, make herbies chord sound right. In that moment I believe my mouth actually fell open. What kind of alchemy was this? And then Miles just took off from there, unleashing a solo that took the song in a new direction. The crowd went absolutely crazy.”
“It took me years to fully understand what happened in that moment onstage. As soon as I played that chord I judged it. In my mind it was the “wrong” chord. But Miles never judged it—he just heard it as a sound that had happened, and he instantly took it on as a challenge, a question of 'How can I integrate that chord into everything else we’re doing?'
"And because he didn’t judge it, he was able to run with it, to turn it into something amazing."
How does this relate to our practice/life?
It's so easy to judge ourself. It's so easy to feel we did something wrong or that "something must be wrong with me". In class we can stand in front of the mirror and it's easy to judge ourself and others around. Easy to compare ourselves.
The breath does not judge, it informs you and guides you. If we connect that breath with our ability to calm the mind, and reduce our judgements and comparisons we become able to move from where we are and create something amazing.
Judgement creates labels, and labels limit your ability to make authentic connections. That's why I love when he points out, "he just heard it as a sound that happened". This is not just jazz, this mindfulness work.
We offen judge/label our experiences as "good, bad, right, wrong, positive, negative. When we define it as such we remove ourselves from the full experience.
Here Is The Playlist that we moved with in class:
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