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.
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?