BUDDY MILES

 

Easily one of the most popular and best known musicians ever to come out of Omaha Nebraska Buddy Miles was inducted into the Nebraska Music Hall of Fame in the summer of 2004 at his appearance at the Omaha (NE) Blues & Jazz Festival. Buddy Miles' musical career spans over 30 years and includes over 40 albums, six world tours, television specials, and TV commercials. He has performed with many of the biggest names in music during his career as a singer, drummer, and band leader. Buddy got his start in music performing with his father, George Miles and his band, The Bebops, at the age of twelve, and played drums for the jazz-influenced combo for several years. Buddy went on to play in numerous jazz and R&B groups including Ruby & the Romantics, The Delophonics, the Ink Spots, and Wilson Pickett. After a performance with Wilson Pickett at the RKO Theatre in Brooklyn, New York, Buddy was approached by guitarist Mike Bloomfield (Paul Butterfield Blues Band), and was asked to join the newly-formed blues-rock band, The Electric Flag, along with fellow Omaha natives Stemsy Hunter and Herbie Rich. Buddy still refers to it as "the best band I ever played in." Fifteen months later, Buddy formed The Buddy Miles Express, again with Omaha, NE natives this time - Herbie Rich and Billy Rich. They recorded several successful albums including Expressway To Your Skull and Electric Church, which was produced by Jimi Hendrix. Buddy toured non-stop, opening for such acts as Cream and The Jimi Hendrix Experience, as well as headlining concert halls all over the world. Buddy was also asked to play on many classic albums such as Hendrix's Electric Ladyland and Muddy Water's Fathers And Sons.

In 1967, Buddy and Jimi Hendrix formed the legendary trio, Band of Gypsys, along with bassist, Billy Cox. They recorded only one album Band Of Gypsys before Hendrix's untimely death. Buddy reformed the Buddy Miles Express and recorded the very successful album, Them Changes, which lasted an impressive 74 weeks on the Billboard Album Chart. This album spawned several hit singles such as "Them Changes," and "Down By The River," (written by Neil Young). Another huge hit for Buddy came when he recorded a live album with Carlos Santana in 1974. Five years later, in 1979, Buddy began a four year stint as the lead singer for Santana. In 1986, Buddy recorded "I Heard It Through The Grapevine", for a California Raisins commercial featuring claymation dancing raisins. It became the most successful commercial in television history, and Buddy went on to produce and sing on three albums under the California Raisins name. Over the years, Buddy has also recorded and performed with many artists including Stevie Wonder, David Bowie and John McLaughlin. He recently was a special guest for Phish at Madison Square Garden in New York, bringing 18,000 people to their feet with his rousing rendition of the classic, "All Along The Watchtower." In 1992, Buddy collaborated with Parliament-Funkadelic alumni Bootsy Collins, to record the high-velocity CD, Hardware-Third Eye Open. The following year, Buddy teamed with Billy Cox, Slash and Paul Rodgers to record "I Don't Live Today" for Stone Free: A Tribute To Jimi Hendrix. In 1994, Buddy reformed The Express and recorded Hell And Back for Rykodisc. 1997 saw the release of The Best Of Buddy Miles on Mercury Records. Buddy continues to actively tour, record and produce other artists. Buddy Miles is rightfully acknowledged and respected as an innovator whose embryonic fusion of Rock and Soul supplanted the advances made by such contemporaries as Jimi Hendrix and Sly Stone.

 

 

 

 

Click here for a clip of Buddy's signature hit "Them Changes"


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