[Dixielandjazz] Talking to fans

Elazar Brandt jazzmin at actcom.net.il
Thu Dec 16 22:22:50 PST 2004

Shalom Jazz Fans,

Hey, never mind at festivals and gigs. Don't most of us run into fans anywhere
and everywhere who recognize us and have heard us play somewhere? On the bus, in
the supermarket, at restaurants, passing us on the streets? There's a name for
this, I think, when people know you because they heard you perform somewhere,
and they sort of expect you to know them too.

Anyway, I get greeted all the time by people that I haven't a clue who they are.
Some even call me by name, or "Dr Jazz". Now and then it's even a cute gal! I
ALWAYS stop and say hello (not only to the cute gals!), and if the conversation
seems to persist, I'll try to determine where we met or where they heard me. You
never know who you're talking to. Tom Wiggins would probably say you have to
make it your business to know. Often they are potential clients. I'll pull out a
card, ask them for one, ask if they've heard our new CD (which I just so happen
to have 10-20 with me at all times), and always keep smiling and look for points
of common interest.

What about those guys or gals who always ask how you play your "mandolina" or
guitara" (i.e., banjo) or "saxophone" (i.e., trumpet, trombone, or
tuba--Israelis call everything a saxophone)? I have learned that there is often
a reason they are asking, like they want to learn themselves, or they even have
one and don't know how to play it. I've converted some of these conversations
into students, and therefore potential band members. Just the other day at a
small gig for relatively low pay I had 2 -- count 'em -- such serious
encounters. The security guard started asking me about my cornet, and it turns
out he wants to learn trumpet. And another gal who plays guitar has a tenor
banjo (!! really odd here) and is trying to learn to play it. Hopefully one or
both will start soon now that Hanukkah is over.

Who was it who said something like, "Don't complain when the fans hound you;
worry about when they stop." Because that would mean your erstwhile career is
about over.

Doctor Jazz Band
Jerusalem, Israel
Tel: +972-2-679-2537

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