Dear Vancouver Music Students,
I write this letter to you as a question, an inquiry if you will. Although I’m frustrated and I’ll admit, a little bit angry, mostly I am curious.
The question is where the hell are you? Why are you not down here tonight (Sunday, December 2nd). Here are some of the people that Mike LeDonne has played with: Benny Goodman, George Coleman, Milt Jackson, Benny Golson. Here are some of the people John Webber has played with: George Coleman, Jimmy Cobb, Louis Hayes, Steve Grossman. Here are some of the people Joe Farnsworth has played with: Cedar Walton, Phaorah Sanders, Harold Mabern. These are only a handful of the names that come to my mind as I write this but trust me there are many many many more that I am missing.
How are you going to learn how to play this music if you don’t come and take these opportunities to hear the music in the flesh played by three people that have been there and pretty much done it all? This is only one Sunday of many in the past few months where the tickets have been seriously discounted and the student turnout has been appalling and quite honestly embarrassing.
Drummers, why haven’t you called me and asked if Joe Farnsworth is giving lessons while he is here, why haven’t you called me and asked if John Webber would be willing to play though a bunch of tunes with you for an hour. Bassists, why haven’t you called me and asked if John Webber will give lessons, why havent you called me and asked if Joe would be into playing some tunes with you. Pianists, why haven’t you asked me if Mike LeDonne is giving lessons while he is here.
Does it even occur to you the opportunity that you’re missing by not taking advantage of this?
This weekend is just one example of the many in the past 12 years where the attendance by students is terrible.
I’m trying hard to make the music accessible for you, I’m trying to make it affordable for you, I’m trying to encourage you to come and be able to soak up everything that there is to soak up. I’m starting to think that its really not about how expensive it is. It’s about that fact that there is lack caring. There is a general lack of caring by students and I’m not sure why.
Please feel free to write me and tell me what’s up.