[Dixielandjazz] Easiest instrument

Rob McCallum rakmccallum at hotmail.com
Sat Feb 22 23:24:59 PST 2003

Hi Bob and everyone,

Not to be argumentative, but I'd question the question.  If someone came up
to me and asked me what the easiest instrument to learn to play is so they
could play in a dixieland band, I would ask them what it is they want to
acheive.  If their goal is simply to play in a dixieland band on the
weekends because it might be a fun thing to do, I would seriously doubt that
they have enough motivation and/or dedication to really learn to play (much
less be worth listening to).  I think most of us are drawn to a particular
instrument and have a desire to learn to master it so that we can go on and
learn a particular musical language (in this case OKOM).  If someone is
really serious about learning how to play an instrument (and understands
that it comes from nothing short of years of hard work), and they don't know
where to start, the only solution is to try different instruments and see
which one they feel a connection with.  To me, jazz is like a calling.

If one singles out any one instrument as easier, let's say tenor sax, does
anyone really think that they're going to sound anything like Coleman
Hawkins without at least a decade of continual practice and determination?
Sure there is the occasional "natural" who'll make rapid progress (and don't
we hate them!! :-)), but for the other 99% of us, it's a lot of work.

All the best,
Rob McCallum

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