Straight ahead and strive for tone!

So said Antoine Batiste’s trombone teacher to him in David Simon’s New-Orleans based HBO series Treme.

Great advice.

He’s basically saying that the two most important things to work on as a musician are your feel and your tone. The notes you play are secondary – it’s how you play them that counts for more.

And I was reminded of these words when happily stumbling across this gig last Thursday. Ray’s tone and Felip’s swing transported us to a different world – somewhere sunny – for half an hour, just like we hope music will do.

Straight ahead and strive for tone. Even if for a week you work on nothing else but these facets of your playing, you’ll be surprised at the improvement in your sound.