Wynton’s Blog

Long Live JK and Phoebe

Jonathan KellyJonathan Kelly is from Maine. He plays bass.
J.K. copies music (translates the hand score into playable parts). He is a one-man team of copyists. When we did my Abyssinian Mass he turned 2hrs of music into professional parts in one week and made the choir director tremble.

He used to have a bass at my apt. and we would play after going through something to be copied.
His wife Phoebe is perfect for him. They were married in a most soulful and completely unpretentious ceremony in Manhattan's Central Park.

J. Kelly and I will be up and sleepless for 4 or 5 days rushing to meet some deadline at 3 in the morning but we still sit down after every music pick-up to play a game of chess.
We always say, "no need to be uncivilized."

He immediately walks out the door upon making a winning move to let me assess what has happened. Not a word. We have worked on hundreds of pieces.

Phoebe asked jk once late at night.
"What ever happens to all this stuff you are killing yourself over?
"We laugh about that all the time because we don't know what happens to it and wonder why we do it especially on really long pieces that never get recorded and everyone complains about it's too long and hard. Let's just play Black Codes forever. It would be a lot easier… Then jk says, "pick up at 2" and I have to be ready. When I'm really late, we compete. Can I compose faster than he copies? I knew I would miss the deadline for the symphony last year when jk said," we're not going to make it. This is too important to write with this type of fatigue."

He never says that. It's ready to be that time again.
Long live JK and Phoebe!

I'm thinking about how he can translate my completely homespun scores with thousands and thousands of notes into all that printed music and almost never make one single error. Must be something in Maine.

I'm thinking about whippin his ass on that chess board.
I'm thinkin' we're gonna be up for the next 4 weeks.


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