The Sandner Blog

100 dollar bill

The Hundred Dollar Tip

As a musician, receiving a tip of five 20s is nice, but there’s something special about finding a $100 bill in your tip jar. Sometimes it is to request a special song, or sometimes I’m asked to play longer. The most fun is to have a $100 bill in your tip jar at the end of the gig and not know where it came from!

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Producing My First Jazz Recording

In June, 1989 I had the opportunity to produce my first recording session. I already had some experience as a hired session musician on commercial jingles, yoga chants, and songwriters’ demos. I had the idea of producing my own session singing and playing with jazz musicians performing blues standards.

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Caribe Lounge

I was geeky and very naïve, but slowly learning. I played all the jazz and pop tunes from memory, so I was easily able to watch the dancers. Boston’s puritanical laws allowed only limited nudity, no bare nipples. But when the dancers turned their back to the audience to make costume adjustments, we could see pretty much everything. A black dancer could spin her boobs in opposite directions (nipples carefully covered). Amazing!

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With Max Gail Sr., In Michigan

I met musical agent and businessman Max Gail, Sr., in November 1971, after driving through a snowstorm to get to his Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, home for an 8am appointment. He was looking for a piano player who could sing.

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With Judy Roberts In Chicago and Arizona

I first saw Judy Roberts perform at the Back Room on Rush Street, Chicago, in 1975. In those days, Rush Street was crackling with entertainment, and Judy had one of the premiere Chicago bands. She sang and played an electronic keyboard, and her quintet had a hip jazz fusion style. I remember the musicians in…

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With Michael Brecker At Berklee

In the summer of 1967 Michael Brecker and I played together in a student combo.

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12-Bar Blues

The 12-bar blues is the most popular and the most-used blues form
Here is the basic 12-bar form with Roman numerals representing the scale degree of the (major) chord.

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How To Listen To Jazz

In general, for beginners or advanced listeners, the best way to take in jazz, or any kind of music, is to listen in an open way, without much judgment or analysis, and experience the expression the performers are conveying.

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The Difference Between Jazz and Blues

“Jazz” and “blues” are words that define styles of music. What’s the difference in these styles?

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Getting Into the Swing of Things

This quality of “Swing” found in jazz music is hard to describe in words. It can inspire and enhance dancing.

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