I tried practicing for a few weeks and ended up playing too fast.
Writing is like jazz. It can be learned, but it can't be taught.
The qualities in music which I considered most important - and still do - were beauty, simplicity, originality, discrimination, and sincerity.
Milton, of all people, gave the most perfect definition of the state of mind required to play jazz: ' with wanton heed and giddy cunning.' That's how you play jazz.
I would like to thank my father who discouraged me from playing the violin at an early age.
It was never supposed to be a hit. It was supposed to be a Joe Morello drum solo,
I was unfashionable before anyone knew who I was.
Complexity can be a trap. You can have a ball developing a phrase, inverting it, playing it in different keys and times and all. But it's really more introspective than communicative. Like a crossword puzzle compared to a poem.
I'm glad [Ornette Coleman] is such an individualist. I like the firmness of thought and purpose that goes into what he's doing, even though I don't always like to listen to it. It's like living in a house where everything's painted red.
We're working as if it were going out of style-which of course it is.
I discovered early in life that if you take gym first period, you can go into the wrestling room and sit in the corner and sleep.
Sometimes I get the feeling that there are orgies going on all over new York City, and somebody says, `Let's call Desmond,' and somebody else says, 'Why bother? He's probably home reading the Encyclopedia Britannica.'
Our basic audience begins with creaking elderly types of twenty-three and above.
I think I had it in the back of my mind that I wanted to sound like a dry martini.
Not for me. If I want to tune everybody out, I just take off my glasses and enjoy the haze.
We used to get on planes, and they'd ask who we were, and we'd say, 'The Dave Brubeck Quartet', and they'd say, 'Who?' In later years they'd say, 'Oh', which amounts to the same thing.
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