Throwback Jazz Style feat. Mike Davis

November 13th, 2013

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Mike Davis is a true Jazz musician and performer, down to his throwback 1920s style.

“My personal style has been connected to music for a long time… For the first two years of music school I tried to go with the flow of my peers, learning more modern styles of jazz and trying to look more current. But once I started getting into the music of the 1920s & 1930s, and working with bands that embraced a ‘vintage’ look, I felt right at home. I like the way I sound playing older music, and I like the way I look wearing fuller-cut clothing, bow ties, spectator shoes, etc. The music and the clothing of that era came more natural me, and together they made each other better…

I hate the idea of changing outfits just to play music; that’s a costume. I’d rather just live it. Clothing should make you feel comfortable being yourself: I like clothing that makes me look older and connects me to the music I play. I realize a lot of pieces/outfits I wear are not for everyone, but that’s what I’ve always enjoyed about TSB; how boring would life be if we all looked like models in the same catalog?”

AMEN brother.

On that note, here’s a sample of Mike’s romantic throwback style. He’s an old soul and a true gentleman, moustache and all.

 NEXT LOOK >>

1. Perfectly Full-Cut

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Photography shot with the Canon EOS 70D digital SLR camera, with Dual Pixel AF technology and built-in Wi-Fi

Mike completely owns the full-cut look of the 1920s. In that era, the more cloth a man wore the more powerful he was – or at least the richer he was (since cloth was expensive and became more and more scare during war periods).

“Alright, I know this one’s loud. But on a sunny day, playing outdoors, this totally makes sense. It’s certainly noticeable – and it’s supposed to be.

I’m on a lot of gigs lately where the dress code is simply ‘jacket and tie’, so I can really do whatever I want. I always offer to tone it down, but the bandleaders that hire me usually like the addition to their show. As someone once said; ‘they don’t have to listen to you, but they do have to look at you’.”

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“The proportions of these  bespoke trousers were modeled after a pair from the 40s. I love the added visual interest of multiple pleats with a full break… There’s an elegance to way the fabric drapes and moves.  That natural movement in cloth can be lost with very close-fitting clothing.

Some of my biggest style icons are William Powell and Clark Gable in the 30s, when full-cut (but well-fitting) clothing was in style.”

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“This jacket was a bit of an impulse purchase…it’s too bright for evening shows, butI think it really flatters my skin tone in daylight.”

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  • Pink Jacket by Against Nature
  • Beige Windowpane Pants by Against Nature
  • Blue Contrast Collar Dress Shirt by H&M
  • Yellow Striped Knit Tie by Brooks Brothers
  • Red and Blue Patterned Pocket Square by Brooks Brothers
  • Black and White Leather Loafers by Allen Edmonds
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  • http://undefined Dick Lickerson

    I personally love this style. This is what I call “Django (Reinhardt) Unchained”.

  • http://profblack.blogspot.kr/ Professor Black

    This is a very exciting post. Thank you for sharing Mr. Davis’ style.

  • John B

    The windowpane suit is amazing and the wide(r) lapels and ties really suit him. I must admit that at first I didn’t like the tuxedo, but it kind of grew on me. I’d still prefer slimmer pants though.

  • Lasse

    In first post he looks like a clown..

    • JD
      • the duke of dorset

        dictionaries – wonderful things:

        Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, 8th edition

        di • gress
        BrE / daɪɡres /
        NAmE / daɪɡres /
        verb

        [intransitive] (formal)
        to start to talk about sth that is not connected with the main point of what you are saying
        di • gres • sion / BrE daɪɡreʃn ; NAmE daɪɡreʃn / noun [countable,  uncountable]

        After several digressions, he finally got to the point.

        see where i’m going with this?

  • Carabruva

    Just curious: how tall is Mike? Hard to tell given the proportions and rise of his clothes, but I’m interested.

  • Olerud_4_life

    Dont like the style. At all, but much respect to his perspective and originality in how he wants to present himself. Need more like him. And he plays the trumpet, the instrument of pending war. Wish I still played it.

  • Nick

    Ok I’m going to address the elephant in the room. You can’t grow a mustache. Please shave it for the sake of the children.

  • Kathleen Boyer

    I think he looks amazingly handsome and very Clark Gable-ish.

  • Gazman

    I’m wondering, is this his day to day attire or did he wear this clobber just for a photo-shoot or when on stage? Not my bag but more power to him. It’s good to see someone going away from the skinny silhouette which has become all too common these days.

  • jasonk

    I really enjoyed all these looks! The idea of wide legs and a slim shirt pairing has been intriguing as I imagine a functional silluette. I wonder what you (tsb) and your readers think about a wide leg with more of a break? I cant stand the thought of dragging my hem on the ground!

    • jasonk

      His pants acually do not drag! Oops.

  • http://anorexicescapades.com BougieHippie

    I enjoy seeing different people’s aesthetics when it comes to men style. Some guys instantly want to say menswear is boring however Crawford manger to have a defined style, that’s retro and use a lot of “it” pieces from men’s runways today.

    I like your signature chain as well. Good job, guy!

    http://www.anorexicescapades.com

    • Jimi Brady

      You should be aware that some people are severely triggered by the content on your website. It would be prudent to stop advertising it on TSB.

  • Randy

    I agree that the pants are a touch too full. Otherwise, this guy is killin it :)

  • AK

    This is a very self-aware, stylish, and confident chap. I admire his moxy.

  • http://www.gent.ro Viorel

    Some people say: „I decided on a pair of shoes and started to create my outfit from there”. Mike started from the trumpet.

  • Nick

    Wasn’t too crazy about the first suit, but the others looked great. I especially love the idea of cufflinks to match your valve caps. Though, that might be a little match-y? I also like the subtle texture difference of the waistcoat in the tux.

  • http://whitneynicjames.com Whitney

    I love a good vintage/throwback look and he nailed all the looks. The fact that he embraces this era so effortlessly is great! I like the patterns, as well as his shoes. Very well groomed and a true unique sense of style!

    ~Whitney
    http://www.whitneynicjames.com

  • http://undefined Mr E

    His throwback looks more fitting with a little Photoshop.

    See if you agree with me: http://postimg.org/image/epz83p5er/

    All apologies to Mr Crawford.

    • http://tsbmen.com Dan Trepanier

      hah nice…except you can’t see the awesome colors in that suit.

      Also, Westley is out NYC photographer.

      Cheers.

      • http://undefined Mr E

        True, but the same limitations currently affect all vintage photographs; we’ll never know how great the clothes because we can’t see them fully.

        My apologies to Westley for the error.

    • http://tsbmen.com Alex Crawford

      Ha that’s awesome!

      • http://undefined Mr E

        Thank you.

        His styling was screaming for the vintage photo feel.

  • Gary

    Nah. Okay if you’re going for a costume, like you’re an extra in Gatsby or you’ve got a gig as a trumpet player in a swing band. But… no.

    • http://undefined Jeanscuffed

      But….he IS a trumpet player in a swing band….with many gigs….so YES!

    • http://www.tsbmen.com Westley Dimagiba

      did you read the article?

  • LouCaves

    I must say, Mr. Davis, you own it.

  • M-O

    That second outfit is outstanding.

  • Martin

    I always have mixed feelings about this kind of look: On one hand I feel it’s way too anachronistic and as a result has a kinda costume-y vibe; but on the other hand, he does look fantastic :)

  • Miguel G

    That second suit is absolutely nasty (in a good way). The waistcoat, lapels, subtlety of the pattern/color is perfection. It also appears to be the most “form-fitting” of all the fuller cut suits. Great style.

  • Shawn

    Although I admire his willingness to ride his own ride, I must say that I find the pants a little bit to full. The pleated ones in look # 1 look really good but I think they’d be better maybe 1 or 2″ less around the ankle. I do love the full break though.

  • http://undefined A Martinez

    This guy rocks! I’m not into fuller cuts for myself..but this style is very becoming. Great Style Mike!

  • http://undefined Robert

    I love Against Nature’s take on styling. From the cuts, to the color palettes, to the individuals that don their brand. Timeless and classic, but with a sense of “fashion-forwardness,” as I see the cut of cloth coming back to a more “full” fit in menswear.

  • Dante

    His shoe game is on point.