Todd Barkan on Getting Money from Miles

MONEY FROM MILES [:59]

NOW, A JAZZ MOMENT

No Line under

WHEN TODD BARKAN RAN SAN FRANCISCO CLUB, THE KEYSTONE KORNER, HE SAW ANOTHER SIDE OF MILES DAVIS, THE MAN WHO GAVE BIRTH TO COOL.

Todd Barkan: We were paying him $12,500 for the week, and it was in 1974. I’ll never forget it as long as I live.

We paid all the musicians in cash; there weren’t any checks. The roadie was actually the percussionist, Mtume. And the very next night, Mtume comes back, and he’s got one of my envelopes in his hand, and it had $2,500 in the envelope. And he hands it back to me, and he said, “Miles wants you to have this $2,500, because he knows you need this money to pay your bills.”  

Miles was known for being very gruff and very difficult. But he also, you know, took really good care of his friends and people that he really cared about.

THIS JAZZ MOMENT WITH NEA JAZZ MASTER TODD BARKAN WAS PRODUCED BY THE NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE ARTS.

“No Line” composed and performed by Miles Davis, from the album Bluing used courtesy of Prestige/Concord Records and by permission of Jazz Horn Music Corporation (BMI), administered by Songs of Kobalt Music Publishing (BMI).