get along, little doggie

When we’re young, we obsess over our flaws and shortcomings and devise methods to improve and overcome them. We study our instruments and music theory and play lots of solo literature. But, most of what we do as musicians in the REAL WORLD is about playing for and with others. You want to guarantee your […]

the gift you can open early

The way I learned it was: Early is on-time. On-time is late. Late is fired. When we first hear this, it’s usually because we need to hear it. But, did we understand the importance of the lesson? When you’re running late, your mind is likely imagining what kind of reaction you’ll get from your peers […]

Find the FLOW…find the happiness

I’ve been fortunate to be involved in some musical presentations through Columbia University’s School of Business. These are performances that morph into moderated discussions of cooperation and communication in the jazz environment that can be adopted and modeled in the business environment. One of the magic moments is always when our moderator says,”I once asked […]

bags in the overhead

Last night, I was introduced to a friend of a friend.  The woman is a flight attendant.  This piqued my interest, since I fly every week and have much empathy for the flight attendants taxed with managing the varied dispositions of air travelers.  I was full of questions. I had observed on a recent flight […]

The Mentality of Lack

I heard a recent story about two musicians I know who are both being considered for the same gig.  When one was asked about the other, he reportedly said,”I can play circles around that guy.” Why would he say this?  How could saying this help his situation?  Perhaps, he shared these thoughts with someone in […]

RIP Ms. Rivers

A few years ago, I was booked to play in a band that opened for Joan Rivers, in Atlantic City. We arrived very early to the gig for a rehearsal and sound check. Ms. Rivers stopped into the rehearsal and listened. Afterward, she asked us to join her on-stage for her part of the show. […]

MLK on Jazz

Opening speech at the 1964 Berlin Jazz Festival by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanity and the Importance of Jazz “God has brought many things out of oppression. He has endowed his creatures with the capacity to create – and from this capacity has flowed the sweet songs of sorrow and joy that have allowed […]

stage fright?

    …a student asked about stage-fright. here’s my take: Stage fright is a bi-product of letting your brain reside in the past or the future. When your brain is in the past, you’re judging your actions that can’t be undone…and you’re probably judging them harshly. When your brain is in the future, you’re imagining […]