Jazz drummer Jimmy Cobb, who introduced subtlety and swing to Miles Davis’ epochal “Type of Blue” and plenty of different basic albums, died at his dwelling in New York on Sunday, in accordance with NPR and different retailers. He was 91. His spouse, Eleana Tee Cobb, mentioned the trigger was lung most cancers.
Whereas finest often known as a member of what aficionados name “Miles Davis’ First Nice Sextet,” acting on albums like “Sketches of Spain” and “In Individual Friday and Saturday Nights at the Blackhawk,” Cobb and his Davis bandmates, bassist Paul Chambers and pianist Wynton Kelly, continued to play collectively till Chambers’ demise in 1969, working with John Coltrane, Wayne Shorter, Wes Montgomery, Artwork Pepper and plenty of others. Cobb additionally labored with singers like Sarah Vaughan and Dinah Washington.
Born in 1929, Cobb was raised in Washington, D.C. and started drumming as a young person. He carried out with Billie Vacation in his hometown and later with bandleader Symphony Sid, the place he carried out with Davis and Charlie Parker. A tour with saxophonist Earl Bostic led to 5 years with Washinton, which is the place he first carried out with Kelly. Saxist Cannonball Adderly recruited Cobb to carry out with him, and the 2 later carried out collectively on “Type of Blue.”
Cobb continued to tour, carry out and train effectively into the 21 st century, serving as a mentor for a brand new era of jazz musicians like Roy Hargrove, Christian McBride and Brad Meldau, who carried out in his band.
And whereas he tended to keep away from the highlight — he didn’t document as a bandleader till the 1980s — the subtlety of his taking part in is deeply ingrained in the muse of fashionable jazz.
“I suppose the sensitivity most likely comes from having to work with singers, as a result of it’s a must to actually be delicate there,” he mentioned in an oral historical past by the Smithsonian, which named im an NEA Jazz Grasp in 2009. “It’s important to hear and simply be a component of what’s occurring.”