Marsalis and his ensemble will perform a sold-out show at
On your latest CD, you took a traditional, no-nonsense approach to recording. Is it difficult to say something new in a straight-ahead jazz setting?
My focus is not new but good. There are plenty things that are considered new -- they're really not, unless you invent the 13th note in the Western Scale, which has been the same for a thousand years, but I digress -- but many of them are not good. The idea of new is very subjective to most people, yet they tend to discuss it in concrete terms. But you would be hard pressed to find a band that plays the variety of music we play, and sound like we do.
Will Buckshot LeFonque ever reunite or is that phase of your music life over for good?
For many years, the principals said they didn't want to do it. Now, I think they will. It's a matter of finding time. Making a record is possible. Touring is out of the question.
Your old friend
He essentially plays the piano, last I checked. So, if he comes through, he'll be playing the piano. I hope he makes it.
Wayne Shorter has a new album out and will celebrate his 80th birthday in August. Has his playing been important to you?
Wayne Shorter's playing on the
You attended a
I don't judge jazz by pop culture standards. If we use that as a standard, then all art is endangered. For those that know, Frank's legacy is alive, and an inspiration to us. For those that don't know, it doesn't make a difference.
I know you've done some teaching at North Carolina Central University in