wise wise words.
“There’s certainly a lot of room for spontaneity, for this wonderful thing that happens live that is so unpredictable. And I’ve already let it be known to the musicians that they have to be ready to move in a very spontaneous manner during the concerts, and they’re really going to have to be on their toes—as will I, because these are great players. So they know what concept I’m looking at in terms of the music.
“I think the set list will vary from night to night because of the amount of music we do have. There will probably be some standard pieces that we’ll play every night. Some pieces lend themselves to continuous evolution, and some are meant to be played with more sobriety. And so, with the pieces with sobriety there will be less evolution in any kind of flamboyant way, they’ll be more discrete, more interior. But then there are pieces, particularly where you have harmonic possibilities of extensions, rhythmic possibilities of extensions. These are ones that I’ll really exploit to the maximum. So you might hear a piece that will be played in one particular rhythmical expression, it will be the same form, but it will be transformed into a different extension one night, and on another it may be entirely different.
“I think this is how it should be for me. I don’t want to predict and say, ‘We’re going to do it like this.’ Yes, the melodies and the basic structures we start with, but then it’s not just playing notes, and trying to get in touch with your soul, getting to the level where you have true freedom. It’s also the interaction between spirits you have in the band, because they’re all aware, all alive, so how do we interact and which way do we interact? So it’s not just the playing of the notes, it’s the playing of the people; and the minute you start playing with the people on the stage you start playing with the people in the audience and with their minds also, which I think is a wonderful thing.
“Spontaneity is the key word here. Of course, to get to that point, it’s hard work, which is why we spend our entire lives dedicated to music. To get to the unknown, which is where spontaneity exists, you have to go through the known. Sometimes you’ll spend a whole night getting through the known and never getting to the unknown [laughs]. Them’s the breaks.”