Among the quotes was the one I put at top of the HUM 223 syllabus:
Music is your own experience, your own thoughts, your wisdom. If you don't live it, it won't come out of your horn. They teach you there's a boundary line to music. But, man, there's no boundary line to art.And one that's especially poignant in light of Parker's addiction:
Any musician who says he is playing better either on tea, the needle, or when he is juiced, is a plain straight liar ... You can miss the most important years of your life, the years of possible creation.Plus a couple of others that remind me of Eugen Herrigel's Zen in the Art of Archery:
Don't play the saxophone. Let it play you.And my favorite of all:
You've got to learn your instrument. Then, you practice, practice, practice. And then, when you finally get up there on the bandstand, forget all that and just wail.
I realized by using the high notes of the chords as a melodic line, and by the right harmonic progression, I could play what I heard inside me. That's when I was born.All the above quotes taken from a website called Thinkexist.com.
Next I googled around and found a Jack Kerouac poem called "Charlie Parker." Kerouac compared him to the Buddha:
And his expression on his faceWhen Parker played, in Kerouac's telling of it,
Was as calm, beautiful, and profound
As the image of the Buddha
Represented in the East ...
You had the feeling of early-in-the-morningNot Kerouac's best, but enough to suggest why Parker was so popular with the Beat poets.
Like a hermit's joy, or
Like the perfect cry of some wild gang
At a jam session,
Finally, and I think most remarkable of all, there's a reminiscence by jazz clarinet player Tony Scott ... not the filmmaker but the featured artist on a 1964 record called Music for Zen Meditation, who played in 2001 at a Buddhist temple in Japan:
I spoke, played solo, in Tokyo and in Kyoto Temples, and, going to Shikoku Temple, played with the Buddhist monk Booze-san, singer and composer about 40 years old. His father is 82 years old. The Zen Buddhist temple, gardens, buildings and school are owned by the family and it is 600 years old. Booze-san and his younger brother Yuri speak English perfectly.Scott's Zen meditation album is considered a minor classic, also featuring koto player Shinichi Yuize and shakuhachi flute player Hozan Yamamoto. It is considered a forerunner of New Age music, which probably ought not to be held against it.
I was thrilled when Booze-san turned to me and said in perfect English: "Buddha loves Charlie Parker!" That alone was worth the trip to Japan.
Booze-san talked and sang some prayers for Bird not always playing prayers for Bird's soul, and during the morning rehearsal I started to improvise on clarinet with him. During the afternoon Ceremony the villagers all together sang prayers for Bird not realizing who Bird was, I played clarinet with them. I am always playing prayers for Bird ...