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Sex and the Jazz Musician: The Brutal Truth!

Sex and the Jazz Musician: The Brutal Truth!
Mort Weiss By

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The following is taken from the chronicles of a gold panel Committee of select persons from the international confines of various state institutions that hold such findings sacred—the long-term commitment of these individuals that have given rant to their multitudinous ravings on this highly personal topic.

In my course of dumpster diving for salvation, I found these discarded records from the Harding administration that are the most revealing about these ubiquitous and reoccurring problems.

And Now the Brutal Truth!

I actually don't know much about the sex life of a jazz musician even though I am one. Based on the knowledge that I have at hand, it seems to me that it would be a very short story indeed, even leaving delusions of grandeur out of it.

So, what the f**k was that all about? Well, I'll tell ya. If you've read this far, very cool—you're my kind of person and I thank you very much. Here's the main reason for this article—and it's been about a half a year since my last one. We here at All About Jazz corporate are, for the most part, housed in very comfortable surroundings and treated very well. But, as I stated, I've really not turned out much in the way of work re: articles and such for a long time, and when passing each other in the hall (that being Mr. Ricci and Mr. Kelman), I find myself avoiding eye contact with either of these gentlemen. When in close proximity of ether of the two, one feels this source of formidable power and a mindset that bespeaks of industry and exploration as in ad astra—to the stars. OK, stay with me now! Here at corporate, a lot of thought is given to the read count that we writers generate on our respective works that we contribute to the site. So for those of you in Bakersfield—since I ain't done much around here except making and throwing paper airplanes at the time clock—well that puts me into a negative position in the asking and or demanding of certain, shall we say, privileges, ya dig?

All right! Onward. I'm sure that many of you reading this, work in a multilayered corporate environment and understand the goings on of the water cooler politics and such. Is there a thing as steno pools anymore? Stenographer; hmm, must look that up—might as well look up water coolers too. In every lifetime the powers that be deem to throw one a nice big, fat, slow ball pitch right down the middle of the strike zone, and all one has to do is swing the bat for that bases—loaded, peak moment, to blossom forth and travel beyond the pale.

OK. A little wordy but this isn't cheer leading 101 we're talking about, man—this is f*@#cking life! A serendipitous (for me) event has very recently occurred here at corporate, in that musicologist (in residence), Dr. Gregory Gumpharter either fell or was pushed out of the window of his corner office on the 23rd floor of the Tristano Tower building (Mr. Ricci's suite on the 28th floor encompasses the entire sq. footage of said floor, giving him a full, panoramic view of both oceans). Now—now do you see what I'm getting at? The title of an article with sex and jazz in it, I know, if people are like me, they will click on it! Yeah! Now do ya dig? Although it seems as though someone of some prominence just recently said, "Mort, most people aren't like you," hmm. Be that as it may. So now that you're hipped , let's get it on!

The miraculous return of Mort Weiss to the scene after an incredible layoff of 40 years?

"Mort Weiss' return to the jazz scene is one of the happier events in the jazz world in the 21st century," internationally acclaimed writer/jazz historian Scott Yanow said about me.

"Mort Weiss is the Rip van Winkle (times two) and the Thomas Edison of jazz," says AAJ.

And there were, and are, many other recognitions of what I had done on August 14, 2001, and how and why I did it. Let me say in all sincerity how much I appreciate that anyone noticed that I was even there. As to the question mark at the subject line of this, well, therein lays the caveat. Ya see, there was no scene that I was returning to. Yes, I had—back in the day in Los Angeles and Hollywood played—jammed, worked with many who would go on to become not only well-known musicians, but also, some legends of the genre. See my archived AAJ article Ornette and Me. Any notoriety that I might have garnered would have been my R&B and R&R Las Vegas years, when I played the tenor sax exclusively but would always be practicing and making sessions on the clarinet, whereever I was. The clarinet was, and is, the only horn that I ever really worked on, and as I've stated in my archived AAJ article, Trane Clones and the Noose of Technology, I'm not particularly thrilled that it is the axe my folks gave me to play—but at the time (1944) it was what the guitar is today, oh yeah!

For those of you who might want to know a little more about what makes Mort Weiss run, I strongly suggest that you read the profile on me, archived on AAJ, Mort to Come, by the very astute and sensitiveSammy Stein. Even though I had fed him information during the time he was putting the work together, after I read it (I didn't want to see any of it as it developed) I just sat in front of my Mac desk top—oh say for about four or five minutes—just sitting there staring at the screen—and reread it once more. After I was put to bed that night, I found out later that my wife Jeanne had hidden everything sharp or with a point on same, substituting crayons for pens and pencils. Everything reverted back to normal for us in about two or three days. Other than that, it wasn't that interesting to me. Hummph! Go ahead give it a shot—but adults, don't try what you read at home!

Speaking of that profile, Mort To Come, the picture that was used of me at the top of the piece was great! It extolled the virtues and the deep feeling of the very soul of the man and his gestalt of emotion and sensitivity for the entire world, and all of mankind who huddle together for reassurance on this vale of tears and laughter. Look at his eye, the laugh and tear lines of having lived a Faustian mythological life of expectation, only to be dashed against the stones of reality again and again that border the seas of torment and despair. Yet, upon further reflection, one (a woman's most likely) would see the vulnerability of a little boy asking to be—aaaawwww [email protected]! Dammmit! I'm freakin' looking at a picture of Peter Brötzmann. Awww, man!

On to other things.

The weekend that I worked with sax legend Teddy Edwards we walked the line. Oh, we surely did. It was sometime during 1964, Teddy and I were picketing a burlesque club in Whittier, California, a small town just east of Los Angeles still within the jurisdiction of Musicians Union Local 47. It was just the two of us and it paid eight dollars an hour, four hours each night. Yeah, the union still had power back then—pre The Beatles and the Class of '65 mentalities that were to prevail. It was cold. Yes, it can get rather cool at night in southern California. Teddy wanted a drink of Scotch but he had a stomach ulcer and was afraid to aggravate the condition with a taste. I was grooving along with a short dog of T-Bird and dropping an occasional Bennie, so I was cool. Occasionally we'd look in the window of the room and dig one of the strippers and the scab band (drums, tenor sax and piano), steadily fucking up "Harlem Nocturne," and like that. Finally, Teddy goes in and orders and gets a glass of milk with a shot of Scotch in it and sits back and digs. After all, he had become a customer. I carried both signs for the moment.

Oh, yeah. Aside from being a great musician, Teddy was as nice a cat as could be—a gentleman. We knew each other from hanging at local 47 and playing at the many sessions in and around L.A. at the time. A must read: A Fireside Chat with Teddy Edwards, on AAJ.

Don Joham. Never heard of him—have you? He was just the world's greatest jazz drummer, and a nice cat. What I've just said about Don was felt among all of us cats and any one that heard him play and or played with him, be they established jazz personalities or fans that were hip to the haps in and around Hollywood and Los Angeles circa 1957-1965. When Don walked into a club that was a known session place, the fuckin,' room lit up—as in "Hey, Don- - all right man—how ya doin'—ya wanna play?"—meaning bypassing some cats that had been waiting hours to get on the stand.

Don, always with a smile on his face would start to mingle, shaking hands and doin' the back and forth verbal dance that all us cats did, back in the day—we were a like minded group that worshiped the ground that the main cats walked on- - and we were trying very hard to learn our craft. I saw little (if any) backstabbing and/or dissing of any kind back in that day. Oh, yeah, when you were on the stand playing "Cherokee" way up and y' all were taking fours or eights and the shit was popping, one tried one's best to burn the cat's shit that came before you. Oh, yeah, that's where you learned to blow.

If there wasn't a pianist there at the time, Don would play piano for the set, and took care of business. Don had absolute perfect pitch, and we tested the shit out of him on it. It would get to the point that I would drop my forearm on the keys with fingers pressing them, and Don with no hesitation would start naming the keys depressed—from left to right or right to left or from inside out or outside in, Yep! And play? The cat was flawless—always in the pocket—always locked with the bass—always listening to and playing for whomever was blowing at that moment—and always picking up on what you were saying on your axe at that moment in time—and giving you a little nudge to make what you said more valid. Oh yeah!



There's great picture on AAJ of George Stearns, Charles Lloyd, Charlie Shoemake, Howard Rumsey and Don Joham In front of The Birdland of the coast, the Lighthouse Café, Hermosa Beach, California, Easter week, 1957, when Charlie gave up a shot at a baseball major league contract to come west to play bebop. He was playing only piano back in the day—Charles Lloyd (if memory serves) came out to L. A. to attend USC dental school. L.A. wasn't at a loss for any great drummers back in the day, there were many, and I played and jammed with most of them. But there was only one Don Joham.

The last time I saw Don was 2002 or 2003. He came driving up to my music store in Costa Mesa, California, in a 1920s Model A or T Ford with a rumble seat. He was nattily dressed, a 1940s-style hat, a necktie sport jacket, pens and pencils in his left pocket—a smile on his face—same cat only a little more worn. He used to talk very soft and low and close up so that no-one else was the recipient of what he had to say to you. He looked in to my eyes and said "Mort, we were there weren't we—man, we paved the way." Ah, Don, we all loved you so. Don Joham 1934-2004.

An afterthought; in the 1980s, aside from running a business, I was heavily into the martial arts and ocean-racing sailboats. Jeanne and I belonged to several yacht clubs, and one, where we had our boat Different Drummer moored, was the Capistrano Bay Yacht club in Dana Point, California. All of this during my 40-year break. OK, I lied a little; I played for about six months sometime in 1985-86. I initiated a series of concerts called Jazz at the Yacht Club and brought in many great and talented people to perform and me. Names like Jeff Hamilton, Monty Budwig, Charlie and Sandi Shoemake, Stephanie Haynes, Ruth Price, Senator Eugene Wright, drummer Jimmie Smith and others. Where I'm going with this is, the night that I played with Monty, Charlie and Jeff, after about two tunes in, I decided to burn one, so I call the tune "Speak Low" and count it off at a way up-tempo, with them doing an eight-bar intro as in 1 2—1234 Bammmmm!—and I almost fell off of the stand, because what I heard was Don Joham behind me. Yea, Jeff!

Drums, drummers, people whom do, and people that talk about it and those that teach it. Really, about jazz, what can anyone teach? Enter Freddie Gruber, drum guru extraordinaire Notice, I didn't say drummer extraordinaire, that wouldn't have pertained to Freddie. I first met Freddie sometime in the late '50s or early '60s—whatever. He was running the after hours sessions at a place in east L.A. called The Diggers. When I say after hours, I mean from 2am, after all the bars closed, to whenever. When I say running the sessions, that means that he would organize the sets, as in who's to play with whom; the rhythm section; a good blend of horns—all dependent on who was there at the time. Yes, there was a pecking order. I almost wrote the words "of sorts": forget it! There was a pecking order! If some cat walked in that was known and took care of biz, someone would be asked, in some cases told, to leave the stand, so that the heavy cat could blow. Oh yeah. One could kinda gauge one's self, as to where they were in the jazz scheme of things in town, by how many times that they were asked to vacate the stand; what a school—none of this everyone's a winner shit!

I remember the times the great Joe Albany would fall by and end up playing by himself because nobody knew what the fuck he was doing when he was stoned out of his head. Joe Albany, almost a giant. Worth looking up. But I digress. Back to Freddie, the cat was born and raised in The Apple. Played drums, dug jazz, hung out with every one that got high, and in the '50s that represented one hell of a lot of cats—great players and not so great. Freddie was using big time, got down to 90 lbs. and decided, to his credit, that he head for the coast. Got sidetracked in Vegas, where he got real tight with Buddy Rich and spent about two years, then on to L.A. around 1957. When I met him, Freddie maintained—and so did we all in our "own sweet way." A few years back, when Terry Gibbs and I did some small concerts together, I would be at his house he would regale me with many story's that you won't find in his book Good Vibes: A Life in Jazz (Scarecrow, 2003), a must read for anyone interested in the real thing—that being bebop! Freddie's name came up and Terry told me about helping him keep his shit together by setting him up as a drum teacher in the music store that he, Terry, owned at the time, and in general helping him in many ways to acquire some kind of life—and ya know what? He did!

Freddie could talk and he could and did paint verbal pictures that, if taken in context with what one was seeking at the time, started to make sense, offering a solution to whatever it was that you came to Freddie about. Freddie could be charismatic and it paid off—he became drum teacher to the stars of the day, like Dave Weckl, Rush's Neil Peart, and the list goes on and on, all extolling the virtues of mind and thought sessions with Freddie. Not just a drum teacher, but also a consultant, a giver of life lessons. But there was a caveat, and that was: no-one had ever heard him play, and no-one can, or could, find a recording or a video of Freddie playing with any one or anybody!

Freddie left the building for good a few years ago. The last time I saw him was six or seven years ago at Terry Gibbs' 80th birthday party/dinner. Freddie was table-hopping as he was wont to do in all situations requiring one to interact with other people. Freddie was glib, talking nonstop, extolling the virtues of this and that and the other. Terry once told me that Freddie never went anywhere without carrying 10K in cash on his person. I'm kind of an expert on doing things my way, and if we ever meet somewhere, sometime I'll definitely say to him, "Freddie you sure as hell did it your way."

Terry's party was held at this mom and pop Italian restaurant in Sherman Oaks in the San Fernando Valley, on the north side of the Hollywood hills in California, not far from Terry's home. There were about forty people in attendance, the crème de la crème of the Hollywood studio and jazz music community, as were my wife Jeanne and myself. The room, the waiters, the food, the décor was very home-like and nice. The dress was Southern California casual, no ties and like that—in other words nothing ostentatious.

Alright, you've got the picture. Across the room was a small bandstand and on it was some farkatke electric piano made in Tibet. Along comes this fellow, oh say about somewhere in his 40s, with a bunch of fake books, gets up on the stand, sits down at the keyboard, puts up one of the fake books, turns to some page and starts playing "Some Enchanted Evening." He continues into a medley of all the songs from the show South Pacific, with a built-in drum machine, booming and banging through tiny (thank God) six-inch speakers, oomm-chucking along in the same meter, on and on and on.

Sitting at the table right below our intrepid pianist was Horace Silver and his son and friends. Are you with me on this—can you picture all that I've described and feel the vibes (no, Terry didn't play) of this surreal Stephen King-esqe dinner, Freddie Gruber, all these studio cats, Horace Silver, the fuckin' pianist dude who couldn't have had any idea who any of these folks were, and what they were about, not that it would have made any difference to the cat. And here's the kicker: no-one—I mean no-one—paid the slightest attention to what was going on, least of all Terry. Jeanne and I looked at each other baffled and just slowly shook our heads. My friends, this was something right out of a Coen Bros. flick!

Important! Please note, I'm not a writer, I'm a storyteller about the things I did, the stuff I saw of the people that made up, at the time, the core and formation of the Mort Weiss of today, those being the foibles, the fuckups, the dreams of youth, and the stark realization of finding one's self as the star in some one-act drama of love-hate, laughter and tears. When asked to come aboard AAJ and share my experiences that were firmly anchored within the jazz community of Hollywood at the time, I made it very clear that without spell check, I still would be dumpster diving for salvation and I wouldn't want to find myself in a situation where I had to worry about sentence structure and the use of proper verbiage. I think everything's cool on that, using my read counts and the great responses that I've received from many of you out there as a guideline.

Now here's what I'm trying to say: you're getting my little scribbling intact and as it comes out of my mind, exactly how it went down at the time—only, because the editors here at AAJ are so freakin' hip, that they know, and respect where I'm coming from and the vehicle of thought that makes the transition from me to you. So, having said that, if you, the reader, happens on a seemingly strange and not very grammatical sentence or train of thought, it's not that it got by the editor, I can very strongly assure you of that, these cats here at AAJ, John, Chris May, Michael and the rest are astute, hip, creative and talented in each of their respective disciplines of thought and actions! And people, I don't kiss ass, fuck the corner office! If you're not sure or don't quite understand what your reading in one of my articles, please get in touch with me and we'll walk through said problem together with the results being your understanding and, in all probabilities, my learning something of value! Hey, Guys. Thanks for letting me be me.

Ya know I've been told many times by many people that I had a book in me, maybe they're right, and here all this time I thought it was gas. Of course if it is, it's all interchangeable isn't it?

When I quit playing—not stopped, quit, June 1965—if one was lucky when working a club, they had a sound system of sorts. This consisted of a mic, and a wire attached to a little speaker in a box placed somewhere on the stand, which squealed with ball—busting feed—back if one turned up the volume past two. If you were a guitarist plugged to your own amp, and if you inadvertently touched the mic stand, god forbid that your shoes were wet. Well, we were all young and much better looking than now, and none of us had pacemakers and a defib, so a few minutes after the experience most cats were ready for the next tune. Cut to 2001, when I really got back on the horse, man, the sound systems, the monitor speakers, which I really like, hell, these days most club owners even keep their pianos kinda tuned. Fucking progress, man; of course very few cats still play the pianoforte any more. And all the wires on the floor of the stand, Geeezzzz man, I was afraid to move when I first started playing again.

Take a look at some of my live performance clips on you tube; notice how I shuffled around on the stand like a freakin zombie from the Night of the Living Dead flick. Didn't help when I had a hip replacement 2005—reminds me, did ya hear about the square guy that fell down and broke his hep? OK, OK on with my thoughts such as they might be. First time I played an outta town venue, coming back to the hotel about 3pm having just had breakfast, the cat at the desk says, "Oh Mr. Weiss, they would like you to come right over for a sound check." What the fa—? A sound check to me was one that didn't bounce, 'ssssup?

1965, man. The freakin Brits hit and hit hard. I remember all the younger cats going around with this phony jive ass Liverpool Trafalgar square effectuated ersatz English accent 'cause man, the chicks dug it. Oh yeah, at that moment supreme when it's payback time for all the dollars you spent on her that night that you couldn't afford and you've worked, cajoled, wined her, dined her and you're both withering in the sound and the fury of this moment divine, "Yes, yes," she's screaming, "take me Paul, I'm yours John, oh, such rapture Ringo, your gorgeous George!" Now, yes, now you make your verbal move "What ho, I say, raaather, steady on, blimey and..."—haaa, haa, ha, I freakin' can't go on. I think you got the picture ha, haa. Oh man. Ha. "Lord what fools these mortals be"—Puck, from Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream. Ohhhh, God.

Next. Jazz free and me.

Well, if you're familiar with my feelings on the topic, then you know where I'm at. I'm not going to name any names other than one, just so you can get some sort of a timeline for what I'm about to explain. From my old chum Ornette (see the AAJ archived article Ornette & Me), who is starting to sound like Jimmy Dorsey to me now, with all of the people strutting their inharmonious stuff these days people blowing bird whistles; folks reaching over the top of the piano and arbitrarily plucking a string here and there; with the drummer hitting the cymbals with his elbows and using a marching bass drum mallet to hit the freakin' bass drum intermittently; and the bassist? On occasion pulling a freakin' string and then staring euphorically off into space with a (no doubt practiced) look, like he had just discovered the cure for herpes—guaranteed to arouse the interest of any of the young ladies at the performance, who had gathered there expecting and receiving a wonderful life lesson from this group of musicians (?) that were—ahh, ahh playing (?) that day. Oh, and these cats have a hit record going for them. Ahhhhh, man! I've seen this crap—oops, strike that! Got a mild but stern reprimand here at corporate once for using the C word in a comment I made about a group not unlike the one that I just described.

Let me explain/make my point further, musicians, take five for a bit while I run over some basic fundamentals for some of the good folks that are reading this and who have never studied music before. Moving—hey, you! Get your arse back in here; I said musicians, dude. All of European and so called Western Hemispheric music is based on 12 tones/sounds—in an octave there are 8 notes/sounds, each note with a letter giving it a name, as E, B, F and so on. Music is written on five horizontal lines and four horizontal spaces. I'll use the word songs when referring to a work of music. Equally spaced vertical lines called bars segment the lines and spaces. See Wikipedia for a more enhanced and detailed description, if needed. OK. Are ya with me? Between these bar lines there are notes running linear which is usually thematic and making up the core value of the song the composer is giving you, the listener.

Also, on another set of lines and spaces there are vertical clusters of notes called chords— each chord determined by its name; for example, E has a complete scale that runs through it, meaning at the given space and the time allotted to same, any note one would play in the E scale would be in harmonious sync with that chord at that moment in time. No, I'm not going to get into key signatures or meter/tempo options here. OK. Break's over, guys, c'mon back in here.

Rules; yes, they count and do not impede progress or enlightenment.

In literature such as James Joyce's Ulysses', William Faulkner's The Sound and the Fury, Allan Ginsberg's Howl, Jack Kerouac's On the Road and like that, sometimes free stream was used—and to a degree, disregarding traditional punctuation and accepted classical sentence structure. But certain rules remained steadfast, such as the spelling of words—dotting I's crossing T's, and so forth, giving the reader some kind of a road map so they would have some idea of what the fuck the writer was talking about. OK. I've given you some of the basic rules of the road re: harmonic structure. I'll take that one more step further; on the chord explanation there are things called extensions, meaning that one cannot only play the basic note therein, but extended a little further out harmonically with notes further away from the first or root note, something that was used in classical music from the 1900s on and in to jazz circa, oh, say, somewhere around 1943ish.

All right, given what I have told you, when I'm blowin some tune regardless of the tempo, I've got this foundation of recognizable structure to navigate on and using all the rules of music, some that I have just stated, for parameters and logical boundaries of thought in which to express myself and tell you my story in a musical syntax. No! Don't tell me boundaries and parameters impede extemporaneous and new dimensions of thought! That's pure and unadulterated jive! What I'm going to tell you next will be a shock to some of you young bloods out there and that is, Trane's "Giant Steps" was all within the given firm chord structure of the song as was every note of his choruses that ensued after the head. I hung with him musically up to and through A Love Supreme (Impulse!, 1965), which was cool because I was also into Jimi Hendrix up to and through Electric Ladyland (Reprise, 1968). Of course, by that time I was a little fucked-up in the head, too—but hey! What the hell, huh? Onward. Of course all that I've told you and everywhere I'm coming from is from my frame of reference and any and all belief systems that I may have acquired throughout my life, until this moment. Likewise, what and how you're receiving this is predicated on yours. Just wanted to throw that into this mix— let's call it a point of reference—OK?

We humans, Homo sapiens genus Rex have to be the most paradoxical things in this universe or in any universe or in any dimension singular or multi-paralleled, from Attila the Hun, Confucius and Aristotle to Bach, Hitler, William Butler Yates, Charles Manson and Mother Teresa to—I think you know where I'm going with this train of thought so let's get there. Basic Freudian, Jungian and Adlerian Psychology mostly tells us what I'm about to extrapolate from them and put into the mindset of an artist wanting to express himself to an audience of people who are mostly freakin' bored with their 9-5 and overflowing with pent-up emotions, mostly of the fear and frustrations which occur in the daily grind to pay the rent.

Knowing this consciously or intuitively the artist, let's say a so-called free saxophonist goes onstage and wearing some weird by accepted standards outfit—picture Captain Beefheart throwaways—gets to center stage band behind him all plugged in master volume switches turned to ten on a couple of Marshall stacks (yeah, I know this a jazz gig—but I've seen this shit on Youtube labeled jazz), cats out there and lets go a Janovian scream on his horn like— BBBLLAGGGATOUTH SHAWGAHEY—BLLAAA ABBB KLLLAAA AHHHH AHH AFFFFUUUUUCCCCCKKKKKZZZZZZ GA AH HU uh uh—za phaaaa. People are goin fuckin' nuts—screaming and shouting their approval of this display of fuck your parents, fuck your job, fuck this, that and the other thing—our artist is prancing about absorbing all of this adulation from his brothers and sisters In misery and misunderstanding; in fact, the cats so fuckin' moved that he starts throwing personal objects to the crowd: first, his very cool sunglasses- - then his jacket, then his—then his—very soul.

Back in 1965, during my AFUPP in Hollywood, California, another musician and I rented a house in back of a house on Willoughby St. just off Vine St. near the Musicians Union, local #47. The other cat was a very good musician and going through the just divorced dance with all of it's confusion and heartbreak. He has gone on to become a very well known name in the industry, is now rich, happy and handsome. So he will remain anonymous. I, on the other hand, am not. We were paying $55.00 a month in rent the house had two bedrooms, two bathrooms, two kitchens—like everything was double; I told you, this was in Hollywood.

We each had things to do during the day like scoring, scrounging and looking for work— though not too hard on the last one. Oh, I forgot to tell y'all what AFUPP meant. Means, All Fucked Up, Period. Another thing I did most of the day was to practice throwing darts at a dartboard we had set up about 25 feet from the throwing launch pad. It got so that, loaded or sober, I couldn't miss the bull's-eye, even if I tried. Well, word got around: Mort Weiss and Igor Stravinsky had a pad within walking distance from the union and there always was some Mexican food, Mary Jane, Tea, Pot, Marijuana, uppers and downers, juice and a bag of Fritos, plus non-stop jazz on the many LPs that were in residence at said pad. Point of information: if one was caught holding by the man, one freakin' seed, it could come down on your ass as a drug-related felony and you could find yourself doing beaucoup time in a penitentiary. I once spent three days in the "Glass House," the name given the main jail facilities in downtown Los Angeles, as I was caught holding one-and-a-half Benzedrine tablets.

Yeah, half the cats in town learned what the word paranoid meant, back in the day. OK, I used to get up at the crack of noon, have some cold pizza, potato chips and, of course, Fritos left over from the night before—oh, and a wee dram of the hair of the dog to kinda soften the harshness of reality that usually confronts one upon awakening in the circumstances that I found myself in at the time. Cats started fallin' by as the day progressed and the sun's march to the Pacific Ocean went unimpeded. The union's business office closed at 5pm, but the rehearsal halls and rooms stayed open to ten and of course there always was shit going on in the parking lot—I'm sure that it was the same way back at #802.

All right then, it's around 4pm and there's about, oh, say, four or five cats hangin' and getting mellowed out on whatever, and Igor and I were maintaining—ya know, just enough, but not too much, and as if by some cosmic spark of intellect, either one of us would kinda, ahh, ask the question aloud to no-one in particular, "Anyone into darts?" Oh yeah! And that was how we paid the rent, ate, drank and were merry for a while, back in the day.

Stay wid me y'all, as I'm going to take y'all back to the jazz free and me segment. Yep, gonna tie this all together, so stay tuned in.

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