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You know, when we were kids, w...

You know, when we were kids, we had to go to a theater to see a movie. And then television came in and you had to wait until midnight to see the one you wanted to see. Now, all you've got to do is go to a store and buy it and you can watch it whenever you want!

71 quotes

No one sits in front of a drum...

No one sits in front of a drum set and thinks they invented it all out of whole cloth. The fact that the set is there means that you've got some dues to pay to Baby Dodds.

71 quotes

As soon as you get a certain a...

As soon as you get a certain amount of attention, then everybody kinda wants to start taking pot shots at you. All your old friends that supported you don't support you any more.

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I don't play favorites with pe...

I don't play favorites with people. My basic philosophy is that the only way to make the world a better place is by bringing something beautiful to every single person you run into at every moment of the day, so how can you play favorites with somebody?

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I have not practiced saxophone...

I have not practiced saxophone since 1980. I mean, not one note. I do not pick it up in my house, and that's the end of it.

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I'm constantly tortured, and t...

I'm constantly tortured, and that's why I say happiness is irrelevant. Happiness is for children and yuppies.

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Classical stuff takes a lot of...

Classical stuff takes a lot of rehearsal time and preparation, but with stuff that involves improvisation, you can over-rehearse it and it gets stale. You don't want it to be too comfortable. In fact, a good sound check, a good rehearsal usually means a bad performance.

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I don't ascribe to the idea of...

I don't ascribe to the idea of the ivory tower composer who sits alone in a room composing his masterpieces and then comes down from Mount Sinai with the tablets. It doesn't work like that. The job of a composer is putting something down on a piece of paper that will inspire the person who's playing.

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I put together the influences ...

I put together the influences of my life in as clear a way as I possibly can, in the same way that Beethoven or Schoenberg or Bach put their influences together.

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I run around, I listen to a lo...

I run around, I listen to a lot of music, go to a lot of concerts. And when I see someone that gases me, I try to go out of my way to involve them somehow in what I'm doing or get involved in what they're doing.

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I used to look at composing mu...

I used to look at composing music as problem solving. But as I get older, it's not about problem solving anymore. There are no solutions, because there are no problems. You just turn the tap and it flows out.

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It's a blast to watch. It's a ...

It's a blast to watch. It's a lot more interesting live than it is on record. I mean, it really is a theatrical event. It's a sporting event! Cause you never know what's gonna happen.

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My solo music - I get up onsta...

My solo music - I get up onstage, I improvise and it's my improvisation. When I get up onstage with Fred Frith and Mike Patton, then we're improvising together. Then it's not my music; it's our music.

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One of the reasons I started T...

One of the reasons I started Tzadik, which is my own label, is to keep things in print. I got tired of labels dropping things out of print when they don't sell.

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That was my challenge as a com...

That was my challenge as a composer. Like with anything, to keep yourself interested in doing what you do, you set yourself challenges. So I said, Okay, I'll try to write a hundred tunes in a year.

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The magic that you find in sur...

The magic that you find in surf music, I think, is really timeless. You know, when I was very young, I was in a surf band. Surf music is an instrumental music that still means a lot to me, not in an nostalgic way, but as something that really gets to the heart of the guitar itself.

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I create work, and I devote my...

I create work, and I devote myself to the creative process, and I try to stay pure in that process and be worthy of the messages that I receive. You can't sit down and write 300 compositions in a three-month period and think that you're doing it all by yourself.

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