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k & tasty licks

How do you think that particular period of "shedding" has influenced your music?

from years ago that have become central to my musical understanding- lessons on listening and subtle forms of variation that really shaped how I perceive music. I was very compulsive as a kid... I didn't "shed" like some people, but I made it my business to listen to everything I could get my hands on and to figure out how to reproduce anything that I could hear. In addition, being around other musicians always pushed me get my act together and I was lucky enough to be around a lot of great peer musicians even in my adolescent years. One in particular was a br illiant drummer who died a year ago from Leukemia. He was RELENTLESS in his pursuits; he never stopped until he had mastered something, and every time I met up with him he was onto the next thing. Seeing those kind of standards gives you ample inspiration not to rest on your laurels.

Very significantly! It's incredible to look back at what seemed like passing lessons or observations

Having studied both classical and jazz... what would you say has been the resulting benefit from each?

At 13 you began playing guitar and studying pretty heady stuff for a teenager- including blues, funk, bluegrass, hip-hop and World music. As a youngster, what was it that drew you to these different types of music? It took time, but from the start of my musical interest I was lucky to learn from the people I admired to have an open mind. I remember being drawn to the idea that for any kind of music that exists, someone out there likes it, so there's got to be something of value- and somehow I decided that if I couldn't find that value, it was my own shortcoming. That attitude and a pretty obsessive listening habit got me into all kinds of stuff real early on.

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