Pat Metheny on being a band leader

tiktok

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As a few days have passed here, I am getting so many requests to comment on Lyle’s passing. Over the past hours, in response, I took a few moments to further reflect….

There was a valuable lesson I learned early on from my most important mentor, Gary Burton; when you start a group, you have an obligation to choose the best musicians you can possibly find. And then, if you are lucky, once you have great people in place, you have an even more important obligation; to create an environment for them to do their very best.

The mandate of the bandleader as I understood it from Gary, (and I believe he understood it from Stan Getz who got it from —… who got it from —…ad infinitum) was to offer the most talented players every opportunity to develop the things that they are most interested to the highest degree possible under your auspices; to create a platform that intersects with what your goals are as a leader, but also a zone that provides a world open to exploration and expansion for everyone. When the moment comes that that intersection is no longer in sight for either side of the equation, that is when it is time to make a change.

With Lyle, as with Steve Rodby, that moment never came. There was always plenty to talk about. In fact, it seemed infinite.--
Pat Metheny, 2020
 

Eric Rowland

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RIP Lyle.... you will be missed......

Pat Metheny’s full statement:

“Lyle was one of the greatest musicians I have ever known. Across more than 30 years, every moment we shared in music was special. From the first notes we played together, we had an immediate bond. His broad intelligence and musical wisdom informed every aspect of who he was in every way. I will miss him with all my heart.”

Fellow Metheny Group member Steve Rodby said:

“I had the great privilege of having Lyle in my life for decades, as an inspiration and as my friend. As anyone who knew him and his music will agree, there will only be one Lyle, and we all will continue to appreciate his soulful brilliance, in so many ways.”

 

Trevordog

Member
Messages
3,681
As a few days have passed here, I am getting so many requests to comment on Lyle’s passing. Over the past hours, in response, I took a few moments to further reflect….

There was a valuable lesson I learned early on from my most important mentor, Gary Burton; when you start a group, you have an obligation to choose the best musicians you can possibly find. And then, if you are lucky, once you have great people in place, you have an even more important obligation; to create an environment for them to do their very best.

The mandate of the bandleader as I understood it from Gary, (and I believe he understood it from Stan Getz who got it from —… who got it from —…ad infinitum) was to offer the most talented players every opportunity to develop the things that they are most interested to the highest degree possible under your auspices; to create a platform that intersects with what your goals are as a leader, but also a zone that provides a world open to exploration and expansion for everyone. When the moment comes that that intersection is no longer in sight for either side of the equation, that is when it is time to make a change.

With Lyle, as with Steve Rodby, that moment never came. There was always plenty to talk about. In fact, it seemed infinite.--
Pat Metheny, 2020
According to Burton's autobiography, that intersection came when Metheny started to ignore Burton's suggestions, get in yelling matches with him, etc.., so Burton fired his ass.
 

tiktok

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22,716
According to Burton's autobiography, that intersection came when Metheny started to ignore Burton's suggestions, get in yelling matches with him, etc.., so Burton fired his ass.
I wonder about the circumstances of Burton leaving Getz' band...
 

Trevordog

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I wonder about the circumstances of Burton leaving Getz' band...
Getz was screwing Burton out of tons of money! Burton was acting as Getz' manager, taking care of everything for him, and then when he found out that Getz was paying him such a small percentage of the pay for the gigs, Burton just told him, 'later'.
Getz gave Burton his first big break in the jazz business (there was actually money to be made in jazz back then), but he treated GB like a dog!
Burton's autobiography was a great read, but he really seemed to enjoy getting revenge on all the guitarists that worked for him; especially Metheny, Coryell, and Sam Brown.
 

Dexter.Sinister

Still breathing
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If it your band, you can only allow a certain amount of creative freedom, otherwise it becomes their band.
Or “our” band. Some evolve to co-equal partnerships run by consensus instead of democracy. That is how most of my bands worked/work. The few where I was the leader were fine but not as fine and the bands where another human was leader were fine but not as fine.
 




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