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Branford Marsalis: It's All About the Band

By Published: January 12, 2005

AAJ: That must make your life a lot easier.

BM: It's not about my life. It's their life.

AAJ: I mean by having the real work going into choosing who's going to be on the label rather than choosing someone and having to go in and make them into something.

BM: Oh, you know I can do that. I've done it. I've done it; I don't have any problems doing that. That's one of those things that... one of the things that I loved about listening to Miles Davis is that Miles always had an instinct for which musicians were great for what situations. He could always pick a band and that was the thing that separated him from everybody else. I used to check out Quincy Jones records for the same reason. You listen to a Michael Jackson record that Quincy Jones produced, there'd be like twenty-five musicians on it, but every musician that he used was perfect for the songs he used them for. I kind of have that instinct, but in jazz I don't think that that really helps. I don't think that that should be the goal. I think that the musicians should have a sense of what they want to do.

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