Photo and interview by Steve Korn

Someone once told me “don’t worry about why you are or are not hired.  Worry about the gigs you have.”  He was a very wise man!

When I was 14 I found out that my middle school teacher had played in the Stan Kenton Band.  I had always respected him, but his professional experience gave me a little more appreciation for his expertise.   This teacher was extremely supportive and encouraging and had a part in my decision to pursue music.

The bass is both simplistic and complicated.  The function of the bass is simple, but making it work is difficult.   I’m trying to play in time, in tune and make good note choices when improvising … this is not simple!

Practice makes me enjoy music making even more.  The more time I am able to spend in practice the better I feel and am able to communicate on gigs.  I can concentrate less on the technical aspect of playing and get inside the music.

When I look at where I’m at right now, I am thankful for all of the amazing opportunities and the people in my life.  The unfortunate part of experience is the realization of how much more there is to learn.

The piece(s) of music that always resonates with me is J.S. Bach’s cello suites.  There is so much great music to hear and enjoy, so this is a very hard question for me to answer.  I appreciate Bach because he was a true genius and improviser.

Some of my best ideas come to me when I’m most relaxed.  It’s difficult for me to loosen up and forget about work, bills, etc.  I find that when I can really rest, I come up with some nice ideas.

My parents were not professional musicians but I grew up listening to my father play Boogie Woogie and stride piano.  I remember being glued to my Dad’s left hand when he was playing, and I was intrigued by the movement in the music.

Fear is often thought of as a motivating factor … I recently decided that I don’t want to make any decisions based on fear.

As I get older, I’ve realized that life does not revolve around music.  I love music.  It’s my passion, but there are more important things.

Music has taught me to be patient, focused, expectant and hopeful.

Change is inevitable.  I expect to see change in every aspect of life, including music.

The thing that makes me nervous on stage is indecision.

I’m happy whenever I’m listening to my Son laugh!

A sense of humor is important on so many levels.  Musicians know all the crazy things that happen on gigs.  A healthy sense of humor is a survival tool.  I’ve found it is important that I am able to laugh at myself … there are many opportunities.

Playing jazz in Seattle is great!  There are so many talented, hardworking and creative people in the Northwest.  I count it a privilege to work with them.

Leading Questions