Home > News & Advice > News Obituaries > Jimmy Cobb (1929–2020), jazz drummer for Miles Davis who played on “Kind of Blue”

Jimmy Cobb (1929–2020), jazz drummer for Miles Davis who played on “Kind of Blue”

by Linnea Crowther

Jimmy Cobb was a jazz drummer best known for his work with Miles Davis (1926 – 1991), including on the seminal album “Kind of Blue.”

Last surviving member

In his early years, Cobb drummed for legends including Billie Holiday (1915 – 1959) and Dinah Washington (1924 – 1963). Cobb joined Davis’ band in 1958, playing alongside jazz greats including John Coltrane (1926 – 1967) and Cannonball Adderly (1928 – 1975). In 1959, the ensemble recorded “Kind of Blue,” the highly influential album that is believed to be the best-selling jazz record of all time. Of the seven musicians who recorded “Kind of Blue,” Cobb was the last surviving, by almost 30 years.

Cobb continued to play with Davis on several subsequent albums, including the Grammy-winning “Sketches of Spain,” before leaving his band in 1963. He later toured and recorded with artists including the Wynton Kelly Trio and Sarah Vaughan (1924 – 1990), as well as leading his own band, Jimmy Cobb’s Mob. In 2009, Cobb was named a Jazz Master by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Advertisement

Cobb on making jazz history with “Kind of Blue”

“That never came up. It was just another great Miles Davis recording and that everybody played well on. If Miles even had an inkling that that was happening he would have asked for a truckload of money and four Ferraris sitting outside. That’s the way he thought about things.” —from a 2009 interview with the Independent

What people said about him

Full obituary: The Washington Post

More Stories