Philly Joe Jones on Milestones
by Tim Lake
With it's mix of post-bop codas and early modal explorations "Milestones" has to be one of the truly great Miles Davis albums. It is worth studying in detail not only because the sextet featured legends John Coltrane and Cannonball Adderley but it also had the equally great and influential jazz drummer Philly Joe Jones on drums.
The title track "Milestones" was originally just called "Miles" and what is unusual and interesting from a jazz drummers perspective is that Philly Joe just holds a groove the whole way through with a rim click on beat 4.
Especially for drummers like myself, who love the creativity of comping behind a soloist (something Philly Joe also does a lot of on other tracks on the album), this requires great discipline, but it swings and grooves so hard.
It's a great way to get your medium-up groove together. Just sit back and enjoy playing along with some amazing solos. Oh and keep counting through the B section!!
It is an idea that you can readily use in your own playing, especially when you want to lower the intensity a little or change the dynamics.
This was originally posted on "Jazz Drumming Blog" back in 2012.
Download the pdf
Milestones - Track
Milestones - Album