Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Howard McGhee on Bird

"[Charlie Parker] used to tell me, 'Maggie, listen to this, remember this?' He'd play something from 1918, man. And I said, 'Man, I've heard that before; where's that from?' And he'd tell you, 'Well, this is from such-and-such a march out of Jim [James Reese] Europe's band, and Europe used to play that thing.' And he could play it note for note, and put it in anywhere. You know what I mean? I mean, how in the hell are you going to compete with a mother like that?"

Howard McGhee, in an interview with Scott Deveaux, "Jazz in the Forties," The Black Perspective in Music 15 (1987): 76.

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