His daughter, model Amanda Giles, is married to Jakko Jakszyk (ex-Level 42). His playing is free and flowing, owing heavily to the jazz tradition while also drawing from rock players such as Mitch Mitchell and Ginger Baker. His playing often had a very orchestral feel as well, as seen on many of the songs of the first King Crimson album, In the Court of the Crimson King. In concert, he was a monster player, creating a huge sound upon which guitarist Robert Fripp, bassist Greg Lake and saxophonist Ian McDonald played their symphonic jazz-rock.
Giles left the group in late 1969, though he played as a session musician on the band's second album, In The Wake Of Poseidon. He joined Ian McDonald to record an album called McDonald and Giles, which was much lighter in style than King Crimson, but just as challenging musically. A solo album, Progress, was recorded in the late 1970s, but only released in the 2000s. He has continued to work as a session musician.
Recently, he co-founded the 21st Century Schizoid Band, a group mostly comprising of old King Crimson members but also including his son-in-law Jakszyk. However, after one tour, he tired of live work and passed the drum stool over to Ian Wallace, another former Crimson drummer, who died in February 2007. Michael Giles had his first professional gig in 1964 with Trendsetters, Ltd., later moving on with his brother Peter Giles to become Robert Fripp's partner in obscurity as a member of Giles, Giles and Fripp in 1967. This of course led to the first incarnation of the mighty King Crimson, but almost as soon as the band was underway it was falling apart, with Giles and Crimson multi-instrumentalist Ian McDonald turning in their notice and recording the much less aggressive McDonald and Giles in 1970.
In the 1970s Giles worked as a session player for artists ranging from Steve Winwood and Kevin Ayers to Leo Sayer and Neil Sedaka. His own musical output in subsequent years has been almost nonexistent, the few exceptions being the soundtrack piece Ghost Dance (a collaboration with Jamie Muir and David Cunningham, recorded in 1983 but not released until 1996), and his only solo album Progress (recorded in 1978 but not released until 2003). In 2002 Giles joined with McDonald and his brother Peter, as well as former Crimson wind player Mel Collins, to form 21st Century Schizoid Band, a band primarily focused on rehashing songs from the early stages of King Crimson; he was replaced in 2003 by fellow King Crimson ex-drummer Ian Wallace. In late 2008, a new venture was announced, Michael Giles' MAD Band, with Ad Chivers and Dan Pennie. A release and live shows are planned for 2009.
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