Dave Brubeck Quotes

  • After the Second World War, I returned to California to study composition with Darius Milhaud, who wrote wonderful works like 'Le Boeuf sur le Toit' and 'La Cretion du Monde.' I especially enjoy his work for two pianos, 'Scaramouche.'
  • I have more energy at the end than I do at the beginning. You can be so beat up that you can scarcely walk on stage but when you get to the piano the excitement kicks in, you forget about being tired.
  • We don't know the power that's within our own bodies.
  • The worst thing about the life of a jazz musician on the road is getting to the gig. Once you're there and playing, it's marvelous.
  • It's like a whole orchestra, the piano for me.
  • Jazz stands for freedom. It's supposed to be the voice of freedom: Get out there and improvise, and take chances, and don't be a perfectionist - leave that to the classical musicians.
  • When I was 20, Shostakovich was my favorite composer. I still find his Fifth Symphony wonderful, with its outstanding themes and rhythms. That's the piece that made me want to be a classical composer.
  • I'm always hoping for the nights that are inspired where you almost have an out of body experience.
  • I had the first integrated Army band in World War II.
  • Concord, California was a great place to grow up.
  • I'm beginning to understand myself. But it would have been great to be able to understand myself when I was 20 rather than when I was 82.
  • When I was first aware that I couldn't read music I didn't know I couldn't read because I could play the music that was in front of me.
  • I was always very aware of drummers. My oldest brother Henry was a drummer, and he drummed on everything in the house from the kitchen sink to stovepipes. He was the first drummer in the Gil Evans Orchestra, so you've got to know how great he was.
  • I knew even if I'm a cowboy, I'm going to be involved in jazz in some way.
  • And there is a time where you can be beyond yourself. You can be better than your technique. You can be better than most of your usual ideas. And this is a whole other category that you can get into.
  • If there's a deadline, I work late. If not, I like to have normal hours, and get up early and work. When things are going well, I hate to quit. And then I'll work 'till exhausted.
  • I used to take my mother to Yosemite. When I turned 14, I got my driver's license, and that's where she'd want to go, so I'd go take her there for two weeks.
  • It's like a whole orchestra, the piano for me. And also it's to me the greatest instrument. I shouldn't say that, but I believe that this is the only instrument I can really feel happy about playing.
  • There's a way of playing safe, there's a way of using tricks and there's the way I like to play which is dangerously where you're going to take a chance on making mistakes in order to create something you haven't created before.
  • What I want to happen is to be really creative, and to play something new in the improvisations, every time.
  • I played a lot of sports and it's the plays in basketball that weren't worked out that are the ones that are just fantastic that you remember. We don't know the power that's within our own bodies.
  • When you hear Bach or Mozart, you hear perfection. Remember that Bach, Mozart and Beethoven were great improvisers. I can hear that in their music.
  • I wanted to be like my father, who was a cattle man and a rodeo roper. And that was - he was my hero, and I wanted to be more like him.
  • My mother Elizabeth Ivey Brubeck was a pianist who studied with Dame Myra Hess and Tobias Matthey. As a child in California I used to listen to her play Chopin.