The latest issue of The Jaguar magazine introduces our new ‘cub’, the E-PACE compact practical sports car, which is already turning heads on the street. As we commit to electrifying every new Jaguar by 2020, we explore how pushing boundaries on the track helps develop our sports cars, from writing motorsport history at Le Mans, to taking on the Nürburgring with the extreme XE SV Project 8 and being at the very cutting edge with the FIA Formula E Championship.
CLASSIC PORTRAIT MILES
CLASSIC PORTRAIT MILES AHEAD 54 THEJAGUAR
MILES DAVIS DEFINED AND REDEFINED THE ESSENCE OF JAZZ. TIGHT-FITTING SUITS, WONDERFULLY ECCENTRIC PERFORMANCES AND A PASSION FOR CARS MADE HIM A 20TH CENTURY ICON. WORDS: Richard Williams ILLUSTRATION: Gregory Gilbert-Lodge PHOTOGRAPHY: REDFERNS GETTY IMAGES Miles Davis turned his back on his listeners, and they loved him for it. Sometimes, while one of his sidemen – John Coltrane, say, or Keith Jarrett – was holding forth, he even left the stage altogether. His reasoning was clear. It was meant as a compliment to the listeners, he argued, to behave as though they would not want to keep staring at him when he was not actually doing anything. He was making his own assumption about the seriousness of their interest in the music. But the irony is of course they wanted to look at him, even when he was doing nothing at all. Because his presence, even his silences, animated the music, and the whole of jazz along with it. For a while in the late 1960s each of his albums carried the tag ”Directions in Music by Miles Davis” on the cover. What to many may have appeared presumptuous or arrogant was in fact a simple statement of truth. Even then, he was changing the course of jazz for the third time – or was it the fourth? And where he went, others followed. Miles Davis began as an apprentice of Charlie Parker, mastering the tricky language of bebop before rejecting its hectic angularity in favor of an approach that better suited his own temperament: something cooler in tone, more lyrical, but retaining a compelling aloofness. Others began the long scramble to keep up. With Kind of Blue in 1959, the best selling jazz album of all time, and the great orchestral suite Sketches of Spain, conceived with his musical soulmate Gil Evans the following year, he brought this period of his career to its peak. No wonder Sketches of Spain appeared in an early episode of Mad Men: It was not just Miles’s music that all the real-life Don Drapers adored, but his style. Many jazz musicians had cultivated an arresting look – the berets, zoot suits and hand-painted neckties of the beboppers in particular – but Davis’s slim-fitting suits and sleek sports cars (including a Jaguar XJ-S), representing a shift beyond Harlem toward a more European attitude, seemed the perfect complement to the restraint and refinement of his sound. His cars were an extension of him, and a step ahead of the crowd. Herbie Hancock, who played in one of Davis’s quintets, once said: “The way he moved, the way he walked, the way he stood when he played, what came out of his horn and the cars he drove, all of that was stylish and part of his persona.” It’s no wonder Davis chose the svelte XJ-S, itself a great performer, refined and beautiful, if unconventional. He could have spent the rest of his life profitably circling in the holding pattern of that sound and style. But an incurable creative restlessness ruled his soul. In the mid-’60s he recruited a bunch of musicians from the next generation and mentored them into the most ferociously creative small group that jazz has ever seen. At the end of the decade he listened to both James Brown and Jimi Hendrix, envied them the age of their audiences, turned his back on the pinstripe suits and the ballads, and played to 600,000 rock fans at the Isle of Wight. His last 20 years had their ups and downs but when he died in 1991, aged 65, it took jazz a while to recover the direction he had supplied for so long. A great performer, refined, elegant and unconventional - no wonder the sleek Jaguar XJ-S was in tune with owner Miles Davis’s leading sense of style. THEJAGUAR 55
JAGUAR MAGAZINE celebrates creativity in all its forms, with exclusive features that inspire sensory excitement, from seductive design to cutting-edge technology.
The latest issue features a range of inspiring people: from Luke Jennings, creator of Villanelle, one of the most interesting television characters in recent times, to Marcus Du Sautoy, who ponders whether artificial intelligence is on the brink of becoming creative. Out on the road, we visit the US to explore the foodie heaven of Portland in a Jaguar I-PACE, take a Jaguar XE to the south of France to get a photographer’s viewpoint of the charming town of Arles, and much more.