Music should not have any mandates. Jazz is not supposed to be something that is required to sound like jazz.
More quotes by Wayne Shorter
You know the actor John Garfield? In one movie he walked up to this train station, the ticket booth, and the guy says, ‘Yes, where are you going?’ And he says, ‘I want a ticket to nowhere.’ I thought: that’s it. The freedom to do that. I want a ticket to nowhere.
The word “jazz” means to me no category, but when you get stuck into wanting to do something the way it was with the “jazz emblem” or logo chained around your neck, you play in a frozen moment in time and you keep fermenting the ‘fifties saying jazz should be this way or that. Well, if jazz to me means no category, then I’ve got the green light And if it sounds like.. sounds like.. sounds like, and keeps crossing over, it’s what I wanted to do in the first place. I like the way Stravinsky and those guys did things. They expressed something, if not themselves. In fact, some people talk about expression, but expression really doesn’t mean anything to me because there’s a lot of work which goes into building a drama and then it’s up to other people to offer “expression.” Expression is such a nebulous thing.
More quotes about Music
If a Jazz musician plays someone else’s song, he has a responsibility to make a distinct and original statement.
I have music inside me and I’m very lucky to be able to play music and that’s the way that I try to do it.
It became a kind of a game, to remember the things that had happened five minutes ago. I would start making notes about the things I was doing, on an instrument that was foreign to me, the guitar, so it was just a fun way of doing cognitive therapy. I was none the wiser to it until I began to improve and my ability to speak began to come back.
Music is my life, professionally, for nearly 60 years. To be recognized by the academy is still the highest honor.
I think of guitar players in terms of doctors: you have the doctor for your heart, the cardiologist, then one that works on your feet, your leg. But I believe George Benson is the one that plays all over. To me, he would be the M.D. of them all.
I think the one thing that I’ve learned is that you cannot predict what’s going to happen. You can’t sit back and try to figure out what people want or leave it up to them to decide. When we all started in this business we would dictate to the audience what was great and they picked up on that based on the fact that we believed that it was great. But that’s all changed. What’s happened in the last ten years or so because is that the technology now means that everyone with a computer can make music and I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not.
Creativity is more than just being different. Anybody can plan weird; that’s easy. What’s hard is to be as simple as Bach. Anyone can make the simple complicated. Creativity is making the complicated simple.
By and large Jazz has always been like the kind of a man you wouldn’t want your daughter to associate with.
They said Bird played bebop, but Bird could still swing. I’ve heard a lot of guys play bebop, but they wasn’t swinging.