I'm sure a lot of people will be sharing their Jimmy Cobb stories in the coming days, but for what it's worth, here is mine.
Blue Train was the first jazz record I ever owned, but it was Kind of Blue that I first spent a long time with, analyzing, picking apart, transcribing, and, most importantly, playing along to. It was the first time I realized that I didn't always have to play "the jazz ride cymbal pattern", and the first time I started to appreciate how to be supportive of the other members of the band.
At one point in college I lived on the third floor of an apartment block. Being quite close quarters I couldn't really play full volume. So, in the corner I crammed a tiny makeshift kit out of an old marching bass drum that I borrowed from the school of music and then stuffed with pillows; a crappy snare drum that was labelled as a Ludwig (though I have my doubts) which I filled with rolled up towels; and a cracked 18' ride cymbal covered in duct tape.
I sat behind that kit and played "So What" and "Freddie Freeloader" on loop again, and again, and again. I would play it with nothing but quarter notes on the ride; I would copy Jimmy's comping; I would try to sing the solos while playing time; I tried to emulate that wicked buzz roll in "So What".
Just a few years ago I was lucky enough to see Jimmy play at Ronnie Scott's here in London. I always feel bad trying to chat to musicians who have just finished a gig, especially the likes of greats such as Jimmy Cobb as everybody and their mother wants a picture, an autograph, a handshake, etc. So I never did say anything to him, but I kind of wish I had. He probably hears it all the time, but it would have been great to tell him how much I learned from him, and how much time I spent/spend with his music.
I wish you had talked to him too. Nice recount.ReplyDelete