Introducing Nicole Glover at Ivories Sunday Feb 19th at 4:30
When I was young, and first getting into the jazz scene, older musicians used to asked me, "How did you get interested in THIS music?" Jazz is not so popular these days, and it seems abnormal anytime young people express interest in playing or even listening to it. That's why I'm really impressed with a young saxophonist named Nicole Glover. She's a Portland area native who seems very serious about the music and become a better musician. She already has a lot of talent, and she's also open to new ideas and influences. She's going to be featured with my trio this Sunday at 4:30 to 7:30 at Ivories(1435 Northwest Flanders Street). The trio will consist of Tom Wakeling on Bass and Alan Jones on Drums. It should be a great afternoon of music.
I did a quick interview with Glover so that you might know more about this young talent.
GC: How did you get into playing jazz? Who are your biggest influences on recordings? Who are your biggest personal influences?
NG: My dad was the one who first introduced me to jazz. He used to play a lot of music for me when I was a kid, and he gave me my first CD, which was Sonny Rollins’ “Saxophone Colossus”. Miles, Cannonball, Wayne Shorter, John Coltrane, and Keith Jarrett were other early influences. So I grew up listening to the music. I didn’t start seriously committing myself to studying the music until I was about 17.
It would be impossible to provide a complete list of my musical influences, but I’ll attempt to name the ones who have had the greatest impact… Miles Davis, Wayne Shorter, Lester Young, John Coltrane, Sonny Rollins, Bird, Monk, Ornette Coleman, Bill Evans, Stan Getz, Rich Perry, Lennie Tristano, Duke Ellington, Ravel, Debussy, Brahms, James Brown, Jimi Hendrix, J Dilla, Radiohead... and so many more...
Personal influences… everyone I come into contact with can teach me something about myself. So I guess all the people in my life influence me.
GC: Why tenor saxophone? Do you find it daunting that there are so many great tenor players out there?
NG: Of course I do… but I started playing the saxophone when I was 11, and at the time the realities of being a tenor player were naturally not present in my consciousness. I had wanted to play saxophone for years, but I started off on the clarinet before making the switch. There was actually a point where I debated playing drums in middle school, but never pursued it (until now). I'm not sure what exactly I'm going to do about being "another tenor saxophonist"... I have some ideas, though. We'll see what happens.
GC: What are your long term musical goals? Where do you see yourself in five years? ten years?
NG: It's difficult to say what my long term musical goals are besides becoming the best musician I can be. I don't really have a specific agenda, and things change, so I try not to think too much about where I might be or what I might be doing several years from now. People can call that naive if they want, I prefer to think of it as seeing what's directly in front of me.
GC: Describe a typical practice session. Do you practice a lot or do things sort of come easily for you?
NG: There are certain aspects of music that come easier to me than others. Still, the best musicians in the world are essentially the ones that practiced the most, whether things came easily to them or not. It’s easy to cheat yourself out of practicing, and my shortcomings are immediately more apparent whenever I do. So I try to stay as honest with myself as possible.
I have a fairly organized practice schedule, something that my mentor Alan Jones helped me establish. I have areas of music that interest me, for example Harmony, Ear Training, Tone, etc., and each day I work on one task from each category. Sometimes I fall into a trap of over-saturating my practicing… there is an incredible amount of information out there that I am not aware of, and I’m too impatient! I need to remind myself sometimes to focus on one thing at a time before moving on.
GC:What's your opinion of the music industry today?
NG: It’s… pretty terrifying. Can that be my answer?