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From: Peter Langston <psl>
Date: Thu, 20 Jul 100 23:10:06 -0700
Subject: jazz quotes/quips
X-Lib-of-Cong-ISSN: 1098-7649 -=[ Fun_People ]=-
From: the Yahoo Internet Life Forward/Joke of the Day,
Jazz quotes from the collection of Al Kooper:
Thelonious Monk hired a bass player for a Tues-Sun. gig in a club in
Washington D.C., and told him there would be a rehearsal at the club
before the first gig, starting at 4 p.m. The bass player showed up at
4 -- no Monk, no band, club's closed. He waited for an hour, and
someone came and opened up the club. He waited until 7, still no Monk,
no band. Gig starts at 9. Monk rolls in at 8:45, the bass player says,
"I thought there was supposed to be a rehearsal today!" Monk says "Oh,
yeah, man . . . that rehearsal was for YOU."
The gig starts and the bass player's doing OK with most of the tunes,
but a couple are kicking his ass. Goes home, practices the ones with
which he's having trouble, comes back Wednesday night, does better.
Goes home, practices them again, OK on Thursday except for one tune --
can't seem to hear it. Spends Friday and Saturday working on that
tune, finally the last night of the gig he feels like he can play it.
After the gig, he says the usual things to Monk, then adds, "Oh, by
the way, that one tune -- it's REALLY hard. Took me all week to get it
Monk's answer: "S---. You played it better when you didn't know it."
Lester Young was playing with a drummer one night that he really
didn't like. The drummer kept on trying be friendly all night. He
finally trapped Lester at the bar after the gig was over, saying, "I
sure had a good time tonight, Pres. I've been thinking, when was the
last time we worked together?"
Lester's answer: "Tonight!"
When Bill Evans was booked at Ronnie Scott's they decided they really
ought to get a decent piano. They sold the old one and set out to hire
one from Steinway. It turned out they didn't have a grand piano in
stock but the German lady in charge tried to convince Ronnie that a
small upright would be ideal because "Mr. Evans could see the boys
over the top."
When the Condon band was touring Britain, they naturally enjoyed the
hospitality provided by local musicians. During one such party, Eddie
Condon spotted Bob Wilber listening avidly to a record and talking
enthusiastically about it to his British friends. "Hey Wilber," he
shouted. "Quit making like a jazz fan!"
A reporter asked Zoot Sims what it had been like touring Russia with
the Benny Goodman band. Zoot replied, "Every gig with Benny is like
playing in Russia."
It was also during that tour that the notoriously mean Goodman was
persuaded, against his better judgment, to give some small change to a
starving child. This incident was filmed by Victor Feldman, who
provided a great deal of amusement subsequently by running the film
backwards so that it appeared that Benny was taking the money from the
Somebody wished Ruby Braff a happy New Year. He turned on them,
saying, "Don't you tell me what sort of a New Year to have!"
"I don't think you're gonna like the drummer."
"Oh really, how come?"
"He's busy man . . . real busy."
"Busier than a cat tryin' to cover s--- up on a marble floor!"
-- Sweets Edison
"How late does the band play?"
"About half a beat behind the drummer."
Erroll Garner was occasionally teased because he couldn't read music.
"Hell, man," he once snapped back, "nobody can hear you read."
Herbie Hancock was backstage at a concert when he was with Miles
Davis. The promoter had put out a large spread of food. Herbie went up
to Miles and said "Miles! Check out all this food they have."
Miles said, "I didn't come here to eat."
Someone once asked Eubie Blake (when he was 97 years old), "How old do
you have to be before your sex drive goes?"
Eubie said: "You'll have to ask someone older than me."
© 2000 Peter Langston