May 28, 2024

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Interview with Pat Bianchi: Why fake it for just more applause?: Video

Jazz interview with a bad musician, as if organist Pat Bianchi. An interview by email in writing. – First let’s start with where you grew up, and what got you interested in music?

Pat Bianchi: – I grew up in Rochester, NY. Coming from a family of musicians, music has always been a very important part of my life from a very early age.

JBN: – How has your sound evolved over time? What have you been doing to find and develop your own sound?

PB: – Well I think developing ones own sound or “voice” is really a life long process. There was a time I very aware and concerned about developing my own sound. But have come to the conclusion that, it is best to let such a thing develop naturally. There are so many factors that come into play: who you play with, the type of music you play, where you play, who you listen to and most importantly, life itself influences your voice. So with so many factors, it only made sense to me to let it develop naturally and on it’s own time.

JBN: – What routine practices or exercises have you developed to maintain and improve your current musical proficiency, in terms of both rhythm and harmony?

PB: – There are many, many different things I do depending on my goals and also how much time I have available.  Sometimes it very specific rhythmic independence exercises between the hands and feet, sometimes is it playing songs in uncomfortable keys, working on specific harmonic concepts. Sometimes it’s just playing different songs. You can practice so many different things and exercises, but if you don’t also work on playing things in “real time” your practice might not be as effective.

JBN: – How do you keep stray, or random, musical influences from diverting you from what you’re doing?

PB: – It is simply the matter of quality being more important than quantity. If the music and musicians are not at a certain level, then I will tend to not participate in those situations.

JBN: – How do you prepare for your recordings and performances to help you maintain both spiritual and musical stamina?

PB: – Well for me now the biggest way to be prepared (physically or spiritually) is simply BE PREPARED musically for what ever situation you are going into. Know the music, do your homework ahead of time. If you have that together, then experience and your musical intuition and will take care of the rest.

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JBN: – In your opinion, what’s the balance in music between intellect and soul?

PB: – I think the balance is always personal thing. No set answer, some of the most simplistic sounding music can be infinitely more complicated than you would realize and intellect is necessary to perform it and the inverse is also true as well. Also it is a listener who will be the one affected by the artist in an emotional way “soulful” or not. So there is no definitive answer in my opinion, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

JBN: – There’s a two-way relationship between audience and artist; are you okay with delivering people the emotion they long for?

PB: – Will I be dramatic for the sake of being dramatic? Of course not, because if I have to pretend to deliver emotion to the audience, it is fake. I play the way I play, I put everything I have into my performances. No gimmicks or tricks, everything 100% from the heart, if I connect with an audience or even a few people on an emotional level, that is a great thing. But why fake it for just more applause?

JBN: – Can you share any memories from gigs, jams, open acts and studio sessions over the years?

PB: – So many stories and memories, many would take too long to tell. But I can say playing Carnegie Hall with the great Pat Martino was a night I’ll never forget.

JBN: – How can we get young people interested in jazz when most of standard tunes are half a century old?

PB: – Well “standard tunes” are only 1 part of the equation in music. But everything  evolves. Not only the songs being played, but the approaches to improvisation, rhythm, harmony and original compositions as well. Musicians must be aware of that.

JBN: – John Coltrane once said that music was his spirit. How do you perceive the spirit and the meaning of life?

PB: – Spirit is something that is a part of you just like the music you may play. Yet is one aspect of life in general. In terms of the meaning of life? Be happy, be comfortable with who you are. That will come out in your music.

JBN: – If you could change one single thing in the musical world and that would become reality, what would that be?

PB: – The music being promoted better by the media and with the same depth that pop, rnb, country, hiphop, etc are currently being pushed.

JBN: – Whom do you find yourself listening to these days?

PB: – Wayne Shorter bootleg at The Village Vanguard

JBN: – What is the message you choose to bring through your music?

PB: – Take time and listen, there are many layers to be appreciated in music.

JBN: – Let’s take a trip with a time machine: where and why would you really want to go?

PB: – To a future where COVID is under control and no longer a concern or effecting daily life and especially the music industry.

Interview by Simon Sargsyan

PAT BIANCHI TRIO - Savannah Jazz

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