Links to the past

I often find myself stuck between the past and the present. There are people in the present who want to throw out all the music from the past as if they came up with their music on their own without help from the past. Then there are those who want to throw out all of the music of the present as if music progress came to a screeching halt a century or so ago.

Both extremes are annoying. Both extremes are wrong. We should appreciate the music pioneers of the past for what they discovered for us even while pushing forward to make today’s music even better.

As you know, I still take piano lessons and this past week, I got my teacher Ted Howe to come out to the studio for a few days. Ted is a link to the past who was right in the middle of the early days of jazz playing for the top acts in a venue in Boston and teaching at the Berklee School of Music back in the days when Duke Ellington would drop by.

I shot a couple of interviews with him last week and today, want to share the first one as he tells a bit of his story. One of the things that you will see me emphasizing in this clip is the fact that we all have connections to the past. We have a musical lineage. If you have been influenced by what I teach, you will learn a bit about that part of your lineage in this video: Ted, his teacher (a founder of Berklee), and Joseph Schillinger.

If you don’t see the video below, click here: