I’m a Better Musician Because of the Company I Keep

by Jason on December 19, 2009 · 3 comments

in Bands, Gigs, Thoughts

Egan's Marquee

Egan's Marquee

This week I had two gigs that reminded me how fortunate I am to play with the folks I do.

The first was Thursday night, when Clave Nagila played at Egan’s Ballard Jam House in Seattle. This is a project I started to blend Latin-jazz with the Jewish melodies I grew up singing at synagogue. I love playing with this band, but we don’t do it very often. And with 7 working musicians, it’s hard to get everybody together to rehearse much. But even so these cats bring it hard every time we play. This gig was a Hanukkah celebration, so I brought two new charts to the gig which we hadn’t ever rehearsed. These turned out to be two of the best tunes of the night!

Then last night I played a wedding at a cool winery near Seattle called Delille Cellars. My regular guys were all booked up, so I put together a band that had never played together before. I had played with them all in different configurations, and most of them had played with each other, but these 5 musicians had never shared the stage. We had a great time, played fun tunes and got tons of compliments.

If you’re a working musician or aspiring to be one, remember that you’re only as good as the company you keep. Surround yourself with the best musicians you can find and let them do what they do best!

My thanks to Nate, Mike, Brian, Adrian, Lalo, Adam, Katrina, Mack, Kevin and Brad for being amazing musicians and true pros. You guys make me better every time I play with you!

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Chris
Twitter: Chodgesmusic
December 21, 2009 at 1:49 pm

I had a similar situation weekend-before-last. I got called for a gig in a local Italian restaurant. A few of the cats were new to me but I had played with a couple (though I didn’t know they were working the gig until they walked in). The band leader had a few charts for us but that went well. Then, someone calls a Christmas tune. Everybody looked around like “damn, I haven’t played that one in forever.” Nobody had a chart so we just decided on a key and went with it. Turned out really well and the audience loved it. The first thing I thought was- this is what it’s about. Taking a tune that two of the guys had never played at all and making it turn out. It’s a great feeling.

Jason
Twitter: 1WorkinMusician
December 22, 2009 at 12:02 am

Right on, Chris! It’s a thrill when it all comes together, for sure!

Dan Filbin
Twitter: SpiritWeasel
January 11, 2010 at 1:56 am

Masel tov!

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