Monday, October 19, 2009

Needle in a Field of Hay

Down in this neck of the American Woods it’s difficult to find musicians. There are musicians, but it’s not like St. Louis or New York, where there is a very great chance you’ll meet another jazz player just walking down the street of the Delmar Loop in St. Louis or wherever the New York hangouts may be.

We’re not looking for just anyone. It’s like a good marriage, that no matter what personality issues there are, and there will be some, the music comes out right—Dave Brubeck and Paul Desmond, Dizzy and Charlie Parker, the Wynton Kelly rhythm section, Grady Tate and Ron Carter, Elvin Jones and…..Jimmy Forrest. Fooled you on that one. Here’s another trick question. John Coltrane and….Duke Ellington. Not McCoy Tyner. It’s got to be right. Right right.

This hasn’t been easy. We were lucky the first go around. Amy was 15, and we just used all of her teachers. That means everyone was checking their personalities at the door of the studio, they were teaching, still, even though the sounds were being recorded.

Then a funny thing happened when Amy was 16. She became quite good, so good and so happy with these unholy fast tempos that the bassist had to bow (no pun intended) out. His hands just hurt too much. He also had a rock back that, according to Amy, is showing some promise of success. He didn’t have time to practice our stuff for 5 hours a day, just to get a quarter inch more inside the pocket.

We’ve also decided to cut back on the drumming, cut it to congas—which will give the songs a deep groove, and fit with the vibes. But finding the elusive bass player, that’s some trick.