I've been listening to people like Dave Brubeck, Bill Evans, Keith Jarrett, Rufus Wainwright and even Jackson Browne lately, my piano idols, trying to understand the method behind their extraordinary ability. The last couple of days I've spent with my iPod head phones jammed into my ears, soaking up as much of their genius as I can. I don't know if it's rubbing off on me or not though.
When Brubeck plays jazz, he taps out these minimal, restrained riffs that are so sweet and simple that one can't help but want more. Jarrett , on the other hand, lets loose and flies across the keys but he does this while somehow managing to hold his many melodies together at the same time.
Bill Evans plays 'A Few of My Favourite Things' into a medley with ease and grace. You can hear him weave in and out of Julie Andrews's famous melody like water.
I'm always trying to play piano like these people can. And then most of the time I try to draw and sketch like I play. In an odd sort of way, most of the things I draw come, at least in part, from the piano stylings of people like Dave, Bill and Keith.
Listen to this. If you're anything like me, it'll change your life.