Miles Silver Biography
The Background Story
Growing up afraid of the dark as a child, my parents gave me a transistor radio to keep me company and lull me to sleep. Through that little radio I discovered some of my all-time favorite and most influential bands and musicians; The Police, David Bowie, The Beatles, The Talking Heads, Pink Floyd. There were plenty of other influential moments like sitting in my dad’s truck listening to eight tracks of Kenny Rogers and Marty Robins. I also loved going to a friend’s house whose older sisters introduced The Clash, The The, Adam Ant, and The Monks – a somewhat strange and colourful palate of sounds that began to define the beginnings of an eclectic taste and what would later become the foundation for a love of quirkiness in music.
Listening to all that music sparked the desire to play it. I began drumming as a teenager and it wasn’t long before I joined a band and started playing house parties. Being completely hooked on playing I wanted to know more about music, so I started learning the piano and theory and set my sights on going to college to study music.
I auditioned to get into Mount Royal University’s jazz program and was a nervous wreck having never auditioned for anything before. I will never forget sitting behind the drums at that audition while four instructors asked me to play different styles, sight read, and then they silently wrote things down in their note books. The audition went well and I got into the program.
Being introduced to the canon of jazz music and the masters who helped define the art form, influenced the way I thought about, listened to and played music. Outside of the classroom and practice rooms, my peers in college created a huge sphere of influence. We were listening to so much; from Frank Zappa to Rush, Django Reinhardt to John Scofield, Art Tatum to Chick Corea, Charlie Parker to John Coltrane and Louis Armstrong to Miles Davis. We took in as much live music as we could, played and practiced together almost daily, and snapped up whatever gigs came our way. As college was coming to a close I was lucky enough to get a call to audition for a band that was going onto the cruise ships. Having survived eight ‘juries’ in college I was well prepared for this audition and the day after my graduating recital I was on the ocean playing with a whole new group of people.
After the cruise ship gig ended I came home with a penchant for writing original songs and began the search for musicians to work with. I played, recorded and toured with several original rock/pop bands, and did jazz gigs as a sideman in between. I had the pleasure to open for bands like the Rheostatics, the Grapes of Wrath, the Sky Diggers, and the Besnard Lakes to name just a few. Yes dues were paid in after-hours blues clubs and enduring smelly tour vans chasing the rock and roll dream and the quest for excellence as a musician.
All of those experiences and the influence of so many musicians I’ve had the good fortune to work with, has directed me to this new point of creativity in music: My own project, writing, recording and releasing one song at a time online.
I am very lucky to be working with long time band-mate, guitar/bass player, composer and friend, Steve Dodd, whose pieces you’ve probably heard on some of MTV’s reality TV shows. We have been creating rock-pop songs that have consistently been dubbed as catchy and “quirky” or “quirk-rock” songs. The ultimate goal is to write songs with really catchy melodies as one would expect in the rock-pop genre. But what finds its way into each song is an element of quirkiness. Nothing that goes way out into left field, but rather covert subtle sounds that tickle the ear or sometimes punctuated segments of instrumentation that will turn heads, the quirkiness is always there.