It was mainly about the music and just wanting to get it right.
~ Bobby Broom ~
I’ve done a lot of interviews with stellar musicians like Bobby Broom about music practice, but this was one of the coolest, not only because I’m a big fan of his, and not because he speaks so eloquently and honestly about his practice. It’s because, during the interview, there was a concept he was talking about that I didn’t understand, so he went to his office, grabbed a guitar and showed me what he was talking about. It was a complex lick and he was cold, so when he tried it, it didn’t come out so well. He did it several times over the next few minutes, and early on, he stopped, realized he was cold, and slowed WAY down. Then he nailed it. He moved up a half step and nailed it again, then put the guitar down because he’d illustrated his point. A link to the edited audio of the interview is below.
What was cool was that it showed me that going slowly in practice is a really simple, powerful idea, but one that can be difficult to actually DO, even for the best of players, like Bobby. We want everything to be up to speed right now, but our brain just doesn’t work that way. The reason it’s important to go slowly is covered in Chapters 4: Slow Down, You Move Too Fast; and 35: Playing With Time in the newly published The Practice of Practice.
Bobby Broom is a jazz guitarist you should know about. He’s a great guy, a deep thinker, and a fantastic musician, but you don’t need to take my word for it. Go see him live! His new organ trio The Bobby Broom Organi-Sation is opening for Steely Dan’s Jamalot Ever After tour this summer. Here’s the tour schedule.
He’s got a new album out this August 19 titled My Shining Hour, and the pre-release tracks I’ve heard sound great! Check out this whole catalog. My personal favorite is Broom Plays for Monk. He’s playing in an organ trio on tour, so check out the video below of another organ trio Bobby’s toured and recorded with, Deep Blue Organ Trio (Greg Rockingham(d), Chris Foreman (Hammond B3 organ), and Bobby Broom (gtr):
His latest album with that trio (Deep Blue Organ Trio) is Wonderful!, celebrating the music of Stevie Wonder. It’s been at the top of the jazz charts for a while. Musicians with more street cred than me also like his playing. Bobby Broom has played with several of the grand-masters of jazz: Sonny Rollins, Art Blakey, Miles Davis, Kenny Burrell, and a lot of others.
Bobby lives and plays in Chicago and tours nationally and internationally with his groups, including The Deep Blue Organ Trio and The Bobby Broom Trio, and he sometimes appears with other great Chicago musicians like the Pharez Whitted Sextet. Check out Bobby’s web site for more information on his upcoming shows.
Huge thanks to Bobby for taking the time to chat about practice and allowing his thoughts to be shared. Thanks so much!
Back-To-School Specials: Kindle editions only $4.99!
- Bobby Broom Trio (you should get all of them, really, but here are my favorites):
- The Deep Blue Organ Trio
Interesting/Useful stuff from the Interview:
- Wes Montgomery
- George Benson
- Sonny Rollins (info, CD, mp3)
- Miles Davis (info, CD, mp3)
- Kenny Burrell (info, CD, mp3)
- One version of the 5 fingerings for the major scale on guitar
- One of the Bobby Broom Trio gigs at Pete Miller’s (Can’t Buy Me Love plays while BB talks about the excellent album Song and Dance)
- The Green Mill
- A Tuesday gig at the Green Mill with the Deep Blue Organ Trio
- Barry Harris‘s book The Harmonic Method for Jazz Guitar (also check out his master class DVD from NYU)
- Bobby Broom’s Blog
- A Blog Supreme interview on Broom’s album Plays for Monk (with Dennis Carroll on bass and Kobie Watkins on drums)
Here’s Bobby taking a solo in the tune The Way You Look Tonight with the stellar Deep Blue Organ Trio at The Green Mill in Chicago where they play every Tuesday: