Gigs, etc.


Thoughts For The Day

(Some new, some old favorites.)

“We (musicians) are just trying to make the world a better place one note at a time.”

Sammy Nestico

“All you can do is do your best to make the music you love and put it out there. After that a million variables can affect whether it’s a success or not. People say it’s all about the music. That’s not true. A lot of good music never gets heard. A lot of bad stuff becomes successful. You just never know.”

Martina McBride

“All I want is to be remembered after I’m gone.”


“Embouchure is only 10 percent of trumpet playing. But that 10 percent has to be 100 percent right.”


“You have to remember the trumpet is a mean instrument. The meanest there is. Sometimes I feel like throwing it out the window, it’s such a beast. There are times when it treats you so sweet and nice that everything comes out just perfect. Then you come back to it the next night, rub your hands together and say to yourself you’re going to do it all over again. You pick up the horn, put it to your chops, and the son of a bitch says ‘screw you.'”

Roy Eldridge

“I figure that between now and the day I die I can always try to improve.”

Doc Severinsen (in 1997, at age 70)

“In the beginning, you have the impulse and the fire and the passion, but you don’t have the relaxation you need to do the role well. Now you can relax, but you have to fight to retain the fire and the passion.”

Robert Duvall (in 1986)

“…When I was ten years old I was rich, I was an aristocrat… surrounded by comfort, and all I thought about was art and music. Now I’m thirty-six and all I think about is money.”

Wallace Shawn in the film “My Dinner With Andre” (1981)

“In school they told me ‘practice makes perfect.’ Then they told me ‘nobody’s perfect.’ So I stopped practicing.”

Steven Wright

“Jazz in America? A dead issue. There is very little interest in jazz here. Especially the kind of jazz I deal with, which is based firmly in the classic American popular song form. There are many young players who play this music beautifully, but the audience is very small, and growing older.”

Dave Frishberg

“Now that we’ve been put through the socioeconomic racial forensics of a jazz-illiterate historian and self-imposed jazz expert prone to sophomoric generalizations and ultraconservative politically correct utterances, can we have some films about jazz by people who actually understand the music itself?”

Keith Jarrett on Ken Burns’ “Jazz”

Sometimes people speak as though someone asked them a question. Well, nobody asked him a question.”

Miles Davis on Wynton Marsalis

“Pay no attention to what the critics say; there has never been set up a statue in honor of a critic.”

Jean Sibelius

“Critics are like eunuchs in a harem: they know how it’s done, they’ve seen it done every day, but they’re unable to do it themselves.”

Brendan Francis Behan

“A man is a critic when he cannot be an artist, in the same way that a man becomes an informer when he cannot be a soldier.”

Gustave Flaubert

“So is diarrhea, but I wouldn’t classify it as entertainment.”

Eileen Heckart’s character in the film “Butterflies Are Free” (1972), when told that “degeneracy” in the theater is justifiable because it’s part of real life.

“I don’t get angry, okay? I mean, I have a tendency to internalize. I can’t express anger. That’s one of the problems I have. I grow a tumor instead.”

Woody Allen in the film “Manhattan” (1979)

“Well, that’s essentially how I feel about life – full of loneliness, and misery, and suffering, and unhappiness – and it’s all over much too quickly.”

Woody Allen in the film “Annie Hall” (1977)

“Life is too important to take seriously.”

Producer-director Phill Rock

“If you don’t know the melody, just play it in unison.”

Lawrence Welk

“If you can’t make both ends meet, make one vegetable.”

Gary Sivils

“Is a vegetarian permitted to eat animal crackers?”

George Carlin

“Give me ambivalence or give me something else.”

Unknown (or maybe it was Anonymous)

“He was more comfortable in front of a big audience than with four or five people at a party.”

Ed McMahon about Johnny Carson

“I only drink to make other people seem more interesting.”

George Jean Nathan

“Without question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer. Oh, I grant you that the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza.”

Dave Barry

“I’d rather not belong to any club that would have me for a member.”

Groucho Marx

“I don’t hate people, but I feel a lot better when they’re not around.”

Mickey Rourke in the film “Barfly” (1987)

“It is inaccurate to say that I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for public office.”

H.L. Mencken

“My choices early in life were either to be a piano player in a whore house or a politician. And to tell the truth, there’s hardly any difference.”

Harry Truman

“I have recently been examining all the known superstitions of the world and do not find in our particular superstition (Christianity) one redeeming feature. They are all alike founded on fables and mythology.”

Thomas Jefferson

“If Jesus came back and saw what was going on in his name, he’d never stop throwing up.”

Max Von Sydow in Woody Allen’s film “Hannah and Her Sisters” (1987)

“Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.”

Carl Sagan

“Hijackers Surprised To Find Selves In Hell”

headline in The Onion, Sept. 26, 2001

“I spent a lot of time playing in miserable places that were not a lot of fun. Somebody once said it is character building and I was like, ‘My character is just fine.'”

Diana Krall

“I’ve already paid these dues!”

mm in June 2007, shouted to the rhythm section over the cacophonous din at a gig where the crowd noise was louder than the band.

“A man has got to know his limitations.”

“Dirty Harry” Callahan/Clint Eastwood in the film “Magnum Force” (1973)

“Never look for water in a dry well.”

Dr. Victor Bikales

“By the time you figure out how to play the C scale, it’s time to play Taps.” 

John McKee (1945-1989)