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Dave Brubeck quotes

I wanted to be like my father, who was a cattle man and a rodeo roper. And that was - he was my hero, and I wanted to be more like him.

It's like a whole orchestra, the piano for me.

There's a way of playing safe, there's a way of using tricks and there's the way I like to play which is dangerously where you're going to take a chance on making mistakes in order to create something you haven't created before.

I'm beginning to understand myself. But it would have been great to be able to understand myself when I was 20 rather than when I was 82.

When I was 20, Shostakovich was my favorite composer. I still find his Fifth Symphony wonderful, with its outstanding themes and rhythms. That's the piece that made me want to be a classical composer.

And there is a time where you can be beyond yourself. You can be better than your technique. You can be better than most of your usual ideas. And this is a whole other category that you can get into.

The worst thing about the life of a jazz musician on the road is getting to the gig. Once you're there and playing, it's marvelous.

Jazz stands for freedom. It's supposed to be the voice of freedom: Get out there and improvise, and take chances, and don't be a perfectionist - leave that to the classical musicians.

Concord, California was a great place to grow up.

I had the first integrated Army band in World War II.

I knew even if I'm a cowboy, I'm going to be involved in jazz in some way.

I'm always hoping for the nights that are inspired where you almost have an out of body experience.

If I told you all the people that have secretly told me I've influenced them, you'd never believe it, and you'll never see it in print, either.

My own Brubeck Institute in California is turning out fantastic young jazz players, and I know great things will happen.

The first choral music I remember hearing was Handel's 'Messiah' when the Mormon Tabernacle Choir broadcast it over the radio.

We don't know the power that's within our own bodies.

What I want to happen is to be really creative, and to play something new in the improvisations, every time.

When I was first aware that I couldn't read music I didn't know I couldn't read because I could play the music that was in front of me.

When you hear Bach or Mozart, you hear perfection. Remember that Bach, Mozart and Beethoven were great improvisers. I can hear that in their music.

After the Second World War, I returned to California to study composition with Darius Milhaud, who wrote wonderful works like 'Le Boeuf sur le Toit' and 'La Cretion du Monde.' I especially enjoy his work for two pianos, 'Scaramouche.'