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

The tips listed below come from late, great jazz genius Thelonious Monk. I found them on a very cool blog called Lists of Note, and noticed right away that all the great musicians I love (including the incomparable David Archuleta, of course) follow these rules probably without even having to think about it… just part of their DNA.

Oh ya, I dig.

In case you can’t make out the handwriting above, here’s the full list:

  • Just because you’re not a drummer, doesn’t mean you don’t have to keep time.
  • Pat your foot & sing the melody in your head, when you play.
  • Stop playing all that bulls***, those weird notes, play the melody!
  • Make the drummer sound good.
  • Discrimination is important.
  • You’ve got to dig it to dig it, you dig?
  • All reet!
  • Always know… (Monk =>  )
  • It must be always night, otherwise they wouldn’t need the lights.
  • Let’s lift the bandstand!!
  • I want to avoid the hecklers.
  • 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 than what you do play.
  • Always leave them wanting more.
  • 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 & can’t make it.
  • When you’re swinging, swing some more! (What should we wear tonight? Sharp as possible!)
  • Don’t sound anybody for a gig, just be on the scene. Those pieces were written so as to have something to play, and to 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 & 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 & spoil it.

So what do you guys think? Which of these notes most applies to David?

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4 Responses to You’ve got to dig it to DIG it, you dig?

  1. emmegirl14 says:

    Interesting notes. Gotta admit I had no idea who this was, what an amazing musician.

    I guess the ones that struck me was the “stay in shape” one, lol and the “A genius is the one most like himself.” In David’s vlogs when he returned home from the Philippines there was a guitar leaning against the wall in the background. I wondered if it was his and if it was going with him.

  2. Very Interesting!! Yes David’s band follows him!! David keeps his Voice fit and he himself keeps fit including eating only certain foods and drinking lots of water. The Music oozes out of him. He doesn’t just tap his foot , he grooves and feels music to his core. Lots of common elements and he definitely leaves us wanting more!!…In fact thanks to You tube, we play our favorites over and over and people write about it. Lots of things to Dig for sure.

  3. TOfan says:

    sorry, guys, def. one of my more random posts, lol … I think the lines that reminded me most of David were:
    You’ve got to dig it to dig it, you dig? ‘cuz he clearly digs it! 😆

    let some things go by. Some music just imagined. What you don’t play can be more important than what you do play. … this made me think of David’s amazing phrasing, where pauses and rests speak volumes and allow you, the listener to fill in the blanks and really feel the emotion of the song, if that makes sense, and

    A genius is the one most like himself. 🙂 🙂 🙂

    I also found this point really interesting:
    The inside of the tune (the bridge) is the part that makes the outside sound good. … really love the bridges of David’s songs.

    …speaking of random, loved this tweet I saw recently:
    “David Archuleta’s voice is above limits , it is beautiful in a indescribable way. It eases all the pain away ♥”

    Also loved this Josh/Anya fan vid set to the One Republic song “Come Home” *sniff*

  4. peppertara says:

    Kind of love this random post TOfan. Loved all the notes too, very ‘neat’ to read as David might say and David definitely ‘digs’ it! Think one of my favorites too has to be “A genius is the one most like himself.” David is sooo…like himself and the result is genius in every part of his music. Yes, David has the most amazing phrasing and honestly don’t think I have ever heard so much warmth, sincerity and emotion through that gorgeous tone of his. “Always leave them wanting more”, well David definitely does that with every single performance.
    Thelonious Monk was a great in his time (B.D. of course), haha, do like that term (hadn’t heard it used before).
    What a sweet tweet too, David’s voice is definitely above limits and he has a naturally soothing and healing voice which is one of things that drew me in like a magnet.
    Have to watch some of these great fan videos, I tend to still get behind. 🙂

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