Mose John Allison, Jr.is an American jazz blues pianist, singer and songwriter...
Louis Jordan, I always liked him as well.
I can't judge my own stuff. That's for others. But those are the three things that I admire.
Pizza Express has been a real godsend for me. I've been working there for several years, six weeks a year. You can go to work every night and play. It's a nice little club. It's just about the right size for me, about 150 people.
Traveling these days has a lot of problems and also it wears you out more.
At this point, I don't listen to other people too much. I'm not really that affected by anyone.
There's a lot of terrible things goin' on all the time, but you gotta try and have some fun in the end.
It's as much fun as it ever was, you know, once I get there. Gettin' there is a little harder.
Then I started listenin' a lot to classical composers. Piano works. Just to see what they were doin'. That sort of put me in a different groove to try to blend all that in.
These people that think I'm cynical, I wish they'd come to see my shows these days because I've turned into a comedian, practically.
I'm pretty much self-centered in that way. I don't try to predict what's gonna happen to jazz or anything like that. Nobody knows what jazz.
But I got an audience that knows what I do. They usually show up, so I usually do pretty good.
I have lots of CDs that came out at one time or another, and according to the statements I've gotten, no one's buying them.I figured there's no need making a new CD. There are plenty of mine out there, and none of them are selling.
The British rockers saved me. They brought me to a different generation altogether [in the 60th]. The Who and The Yardbirds and Georgie Fame and Van Morrison and all those people. The only person who ever did my songs in [ U.S] country was Bonnie Raitt.
I remember the first check I got from The Who's recording [of "Young Man Blues"]. I'd been getting checks for $10 and $15 and so forth, and this one was for a much larger amount than that. I thought it was a mistake.
I never bothered about keeping track.Every now and then someone records one of my songs, and I get credit for it.
I'm happy whenever anybody does my material. I don't care what they do with it. I do what I want to with other people's songs.
I didn't feel anything [frustraiting]. I just kept working 110 or 120 nights a year.
I don't sit down to write a song; they just come to me from something that somebody says, or something in the news. The punchline comes to me, and I go over it in my head and get the song form. I hadn't been doing that a lot.
I'm not inspired by songwriting at all; that took place years ago. I'm pretty well established, as far as my influences go. I don't listen to music anymore. It all sounds the same to me.
I'm improvising all the time. Everything I do is improvised. On the piano, at least.
My main influences have always been the classic jazz players who sang, like Louis Armstrong and Nat King Cole and Jack Teagarden.
So I'm in my 51st year of playin' mostly nightclubs. I do some concerts.
I'm playin' the music I like.
I told [my daughter Amy] at an early age that she had a good ear. But I didn't influence her music much. She's pretty much developed her style on her own, and she's a talented songwriter.
I've been able to do pretty well. I don't work as many consecutive nights as I used to, but I'm still working over 100 nights a year, so that's good for me.
I just try to do as good job with the material as I can and play some jazz as well, some improvised music, and do that every night. Just see where it goes.
The jazz boom was goin' on then so there was a lot happenin' in New York at that time.
My dad was a self-taught stride piano player. The myth is - I don't whether it's true or not - that he taught himself to play by watching a player piano.
There's a few tunes of mine that don't have jokes, but most of them have a joke and they have a humorous point of view somewhere.
I've heard some tunes in recent years that were pretty close to that same idea. The idea was you turn on the radio and you want to hear some music and up comes a commercial.
As far as I'm concerned, the essentials of jazz are: melodic improvisation, melodic invention, swing, and instrumental personality.
I started going to a piano teacher at 5 years old, but pretty soon I started picking things out on my own and stopped taking music lessons. I never could read music very well, but I've still been doing it.
Ever since the world ended, I don't go out as much
A young man ain't nothin' in the world these days
The idea was I'd never amount to anything in music, The theme there was that I was talented, but I wouldn't work hard enough to do anything with it.
You always want to write the perfect song. But no one will ever write the perfect song, I guess. I would just like to write on that has all the elements of what I'm tring to do. And I'm working on it. I'm always working on it.
If it's worth remembering, I'll remember it. If something keeps coming back, if I keep thinking of that phrase, if I see manifestations of it at different times and different places, then I feel it's worth making a song out of.
I start out with words, with the idea, the line. Then after I get a line or two, I try to find what melodic line those lines would be suited to. As soon as I find the form I can finish the song in my head.
And Lennie Tristano I like a lot, I still like him.
I do some concerts. At the moment, I'm being helped a lot by a gig I play in London, which is Pizza Express.
I don't remember any impression [from blues].The blues was just everywhere in the Mississippi Delta. It was mostly black sharecroppers living there, and there was a lot of blues around. Sometimes the guys would sing the blues in the fields, working.
I sang and wrote songs when I was 12 years old.
I'm playin' music for a certain type of person. Fortunately, there are more and more of us. At least there are more comin' to see me than there were 30 years ago or so.
I went through the whole number, you know. The swing era, the boogie woogie era, the bebop era. Thelonious Monk is still one of my favorites. So a lot of these people had their effect on me.
I never thought I was playing black music. I was just playing music, the stuff I liked. I sang blues at parties and things when I was a kid.
The thing of playin' and singin' never bothered me.
I just have a lot off different influences.
I'm always storing away phrases and ideas and things that I think might turn into songs.
I was taking chemical engineering. But I went into the army after that. When I came out of the army, I was a different person. I met a lot of good jazz players in the army.
I haven't stopped and I don't plan on stoppin' any time soon.
I have no idea what I'm doin'. I've never seen me.
I finally decided if I was going to make a living, I was gonna have to come to New York.
[The producer told me:] "We can try one more record, and we'll see how that one does." Those records never did anything. My music never got mentioned. My color got mentioned.
I do very few standards. Hardly any. Other people's tunes that I do are usually obscure tunes, for the most part, although I do a couple of Duke Ellington tunes that are well known.
I never sit down and write. I just sorta let things form in my brain.
I been getting good crowds. It only took 50 years.
I don't care what anyone does, as long as they go through the copyright office.
The things that really matter don't mix with idle chatter.
Everybody cryin' mercy / When they don't know the meaning of the word.
All the classic jazz players all sang and a lot of 'em sang blues.