Performance Advice from Thelonious Monk...

Below are notes on Thelonious Monk's music performance advice. Picture below, transcription below that!!!

--Just because you’re not a drummer, doesn’t mean you don’t have to keep time.

--Pat your foot and sing the melody in your head, when you play.

--Stop playing all those weird notes (that bullshit), play the melody!

--Make the drummer sound good.

--Discrimination is important.

--You’ve got to dig it to dig it, you dig?


--Always know….(MONK)

--It must be always night, otherwise they wouldn’t need the lights.

--Let’s lift the band stand!!

--I want to avoid the hecklers.
Thelonious Monk

--Don’t play the piano part, I’m playing that. Don’t listen to me. I’m supposed to be accompanying you!

--The inside of the tune (the bridge) is the part that makes the outside sound good.

--Don’t play everything (or every time); let some things go by. Some music just imagined. What you don’t play can be more important that what you do.

--A note can be small as a pin or as big as the world, it depends on your imagination.

--Stay in shape! Sometimes a musician waits for a gig, and when it comes, he’s out of shape and can’t make it.

--When you’re swinging, swing some more.

--(What should we wear tonight? Sharp as possible!)

--Always leave them wanting more.

--Don’t sound anybody for a gig, just be on the scene. These pieces were written so as to have something to play and get cats interested enough to come to rehearsal.

--You’ve got it! If you don’t want to play, tell a joke or dance, but in any case, you got it! (To a drummer who didn’t want to solo)

--Whatever you think can’t be done, somebody will come along and do it. A genius is the one most like himself.

--They tried to get me to hate white people, but someone would always come along and spoil it.

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