Paley Martin used to call Badu on her cell phone.
It goes without saying that everything is beautiful when Erykah Badu, Miles Davis, and jazz pianist Robert Glasper are involved, and “Maiysha (So Long)” is no exception. The track is Glasper’s bossa nova rendition of Davis’s version on his 1974 album Get Up With It.
Set for a May 27 release, Everything is Beautiful is Glasper’s homage to the late jazz legend and accompaniment to the forthcoming Miles Ahead biopic and soundtrack. Featuring a slew of contemporary acts from Laura Mvulva, Ledisi, Bilal, King, Hiatus Kaiyote, and more, the album is set to do Davis the justice he deserves. And none are more fit for the task than Glasper.
“Maiysha (So Long)” interprets its original with an unparalleled ease that could only be brought upon by Badu. Yet, unlike Davis’s 14 minute-long track, this one stands relatively short at 7:32. Badu grazes her way through the minutes in no rush, one stretched-out bar at a time—each honeyed note like its own lullaby as she sings, “so long, so long.”
Like an eternal au revoir, “Maiysha (So Long)” brings light to the artist that never really left us. As Davis’s sound takes different forms throughout the years, his music always lives in and informs artists both new and old. The truth is, as Glasper proves on this single, Davis need not be remembered, but instead recognized as the indelible influence he remains.