Johnny Costa is one of the best known and least known jazz pianists of the 20th century. Have you heard of him? His albums are hardly jazz essentials. And yet he was one of the most facile, brilliant pianists who ever played the instrument. Remember all that jazz piano at the beginning and end of Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood? That was Johnny Costa!
As I was listening to one of his records, jealous of his chops, I noticed something I never noticed before about a good solo. Johnny wasn't always playing, wasn't just spewing notes non-stop. He played, then he paused, played, then paused.
All I ever wanted to do was be able to spew. Play, play, play. This suggested to me that I've been missing something essential.
The reason Johnny's solo sounds so great is because of the pauses. They highlight what he does. The space defines the notes.
You may have noticed I haven't blogged in two months. That's after something like ten years without missing a week. I decided maybe I could use the time for something else. I paused. Tonight I felt like reaching out to you again. I'm wondering if the pause makes the blog better.
I have plenty of blog-topics waiting in a file. I don't have to pause. But I wanted to. What will I do next? Will I get back to my regular schedule? Will I blog weekly for the rest of my life?
We'll see. In the meantime, I am now partnered with Bandzoogle to host my site. This means a number of things.
First, the design is better. Second, I once again have a mail-function and will not have to e-mail you directly. There is no third.
I keep hearing from people that they love the blog and have for years. It's more gratifying to me to hear your thoughts and comments. Please reach out!
Who got the joke in the title? Let me know.