It was when I found out I could make mistakes that I knew I was on to something.
Jazz is the only music in which the same note can be played night after night but differently each time.
Music has many uses and I think the most perfected use that music has is one of a healing quality.
For me, being an innovator doesn't mean being more intelligent, more rich, it's not a word, it's an action.
I don't try to please when I play. I try to cure.
Whatever you do, it's over when you do it - but first you have to do it.
We in the Western world suffer from too many categories and classes; we've forgotten that we all still have diapers on. We've separated music from life.
The idea is more important than the style you're playing in.
You don't have to worry about being a number one, number two, or number three. Numbers don't have anything to do with placement. Numbers only have something to do with repetition.
You've got to realize. In the western world, regardless of what color you are, what title the music is, it's all played by the same notes.
I wasn't so interested in being paid. I wanted to be heard. That's why I'm broke.
That's what I was trying to say when we were talking about sound. I think that every person, whether they play music or don't play music, has a sound - their own sound, that thing that you're talking about.
Making music is like a form of religion for me, because it soothes your heart and increases the pleasure of your brain. Most of all, it's very enjoyable to express something that you can only hear and not see, which is not bad.
I have often read critical pieces where the critic said that what the composer was trying to do didn't come off. I have wondered what the critic meant if he didn't know what the composer was trying to do.
I think that those elements - light and sound - are beyond democratic. They're into the creative part of life.
The only thing my mother would say to me about my music - I'd say, "Mom, listen to this," and she'd say, "Junior, I know who you are."
Even when you write it, someone's got to play it. So if you can play it and bypass all the rest of the things, you're still doing as great as someone that has spent forty years trying to find out how to do that. I'm really pro-human beings, pro-expression of everything.
Harmelody allows everybody to be an individual who does not have to imitate anybody else.
I'm interested in music, not in my image. If someone plays something fantastic, that I could never have thought of, it makes me happy to know it exists.
It seems the activity of expressing sound to do with music has just started blooming - and because of that, the beginners feel like they're professionals, and the professionals feel like they are beginners, which is very healthy.
I don't really live like a musician myself. I think music is just something that I do, but I'd like to be doing lots of other things. I like to cure all kinds of illness.
Only America makes you feel that everybody wants to be like you. That's what success is: Everybody wants to be like you.
I'm having this conversation with you now. I'm talking, but I'm thinking, feeling, smelling, and moving. Yet I'm concentrating on what you're saying. So that means there's more things going on in the body than just the present thing that the person's got you doing.
I had a really good time in New Orleans, although I had some very tragic times in Baton Rouge. Some guys beat me up and threw my horn away. 'Cause I had a beard, then, and long hair like the Beatles.
Musicians tell me, if what I'm doing is right, they should never have gone to school.
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