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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2009
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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I've been absent for a while, had some troubles to face, been through a hard time, came out again and doing better now.

One of the things that went down the drain, was my playing. No air, no endurance, no chops, no control over my fingers, no concentration, everything was gone. I've seen a doctor, and another one, and a couple of other ones too, and now they found out I have some kind of disturbance on my nervous system. Reason was simple : too tired, too much stress, too much dirt in my body.

I changed some habits, and had remarkeable results. I quit coffee, alcohol and cannabis. Hello air, welcome endurance, nice to see you chops. In three weeks I went from playing 15 minutes and breaking to playing a 2 hour gig without problem.

Remarkeably, the public heard the difference, not only in the playing, but also in my solos. I thought they were great, turned out that they are better now. And even more, I'm not the only guy who experienced this. Some fellow musicians had exactly the same experience after getting their drug use down (I count alcohol as a drug here).

/rant on/
Your life, your body, but don't tell me you need that stuff to be great.

Why did all the greats played under influence then? First, they didn't, far from all of them. Second, it has more to do with the fact that in general, musicians use more of that stuff. It's a different kind of people. You have to live at the edge to even try music as a way of life.

Just make sure you don't tumble over that edge. You might fall deeper than you want.
/rant off/

have a nice day :mrgreen:
 

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Jolle
Great!
Do you have recordings: before and after? The things you wrote are truthful and honest. It's good to hear.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2008
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This is so obvious.

If everyone including players would do three things they would do themselves a huge favor.

1. Moderate exercise everyday.

2. Eat a well balanced diet.

3. Get plenty of sleep.

You can't blow a horn and really do a good job of it if your putting garbage in your body and your mind.
 

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to quote my good friend, MF DOOM- "Sometimes he might need ta detox/it could help you wit ya rhyme flow and ya beatbox"
 

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Forum Contributor 2015, SOTW Better late than neve
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Jolle, I kicked my demons a long time ago. Breathing fresh air and getting your head out of the clouds is a sooooooooo much better way to live. I only wish I knew that then.

Be strong and be the real you.
 

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The most prolific Distinguished SOTW poster, Forum
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Good luck and congratulations. Is this your first time straight? If it is, although you used your playing improvements as an example, keep in mind that some things might actually turn to crap before they get better. Staying straight is your priority. You can't play your sax good -or bad- if you're dead.
 

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Hey Jolle,

I was thinking about you the other day--but actually I was wondering how your girlfriend is doing?

R.
 

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I've never done the drugs and gave up booze in college, and I gave up caffeine two summers ago. Best thing I ever did for my playing. I am more calm, I sleep better, less agitation in performances. I can still play plenty fast and my reading has not slowed down any that I can tell. I've had a few nights where some caffeine was tempting but the negatives outweigh the positives so completely that I can't see ever using the stuff again. A racing heart and having to use the john frequently aren't things I want back. ( At one point I was drinking a gallon+ of dew a day.)

Hang tough, it's worth it.
 

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Carl H. said:
I've never done the drugs and gave up booze in college, and I gave up caffeine two summers ago. Best thing I ever did for my playing. I am more calm, I sleep better, less agitation in performances. I can still play plenty fast and my reading has not slowed down any that I can tell. I've had a few nights where some caffeine was tempting but the negatives outweigh the positives so completely that I can't see ever using the stuff again. A racing heart and having to use the john frequently aren't things I want back. ( At one point I was drinking a gallon+ of dew a day.)

Hang tough, it's worth it.

I don't smoke, drink, or use drugs; I started right, and I am glad to hear you got on the right track Jolle.


And man, a gallon of dew a day...that is a ton. My 9th grade biology teacher almost died from doing that.
 

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Congratulations on your fresh start. I drink in moderation, but never before playing. I have played once after a few beers, thought I sounded good. and I recorded it, the next morning on playback, awful!

I keep fit, I have ran at least 2 half marathons a year for the last 15 years, so I do reward myeslf with the odd drink, It is all about balance.

If you ever want an example of a wasted talent through drugs and drink, read "Straight Life" by Art and Laurie Pepper. Art, although brilliant, could have been even better. Although even he admits that he lost the ability to sight-read after drinking.
 

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Drinking and drugging don't make you hip. They don't help you to play better. They don't help you to be cool. Working hard and being a decent person is hip, and cool.

Took me a while to figure this out.;)

It's great to be a part of the solution, not part of the problem.

Congratulations Jolle. You're doing the right thing.
 

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Nice post Jolle, with plenty that I can relate to on a personal level too. I agree with your sentiments and I wish you well.
 

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who's going to respond to this thread - yea man, I drink mad jugs of homebrew and puff on dank phatties every day!! It keeps me sane and helps my playing too! :cool:

Zoot Sims was once asked, how come you can play so well drunk? He said, because I practice drunk!

That's right, some people enjoy drugs and alcohol! Especially for playing jazz! Do a little research and you will find there is a rich relationship between jazz music and drug use.

[rant over] I quit booze this year. I've been so much more clear and level-headed, it's definitely improved my mental health. Nonetheless, I don't judge other (adults) who may use alcohol or other substances. I think it is a personal choice.
 

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I've got nothing against drugs and alcohol but when my drummer smokes weed, his time goes all to H3LL. I can always tell if he's been toking on break.Always.
 

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LBAjazz said:
I've got nothing against drugs and alcohol but when my drummer smokes weed, his time goes all to H3LL. I can always tell if he's been toking on break.Always.
But does the pickled/stoned audience like his time?
 

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Prodigal Son and Forum Contributor 2008
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I almost had something to say, but I don't want it to be taken the wrong way. I have fun having fun!

Most bands have appreciated me going a little crazy, otherwise there's no excitement on stage with the band.

I found out a few years ago that the worst is being the only one on stage who isn't on meth.
 

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martysax said:
I almost had something to say, but I don't want it to be taken the wrong way. I have fun having fun! Most bands have appreciated me going a little crazy, otherwise there's no excitement on stage with the band. I found out a few years ago that the worst is being the only one on stage who isn't on meth.
Careful what you say, Marty. We all know that you leave gigs with two cases in your hands. One for your tenor and the other for your liver. :D
 

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Hey Jolle!

Yeah, I've missed seeing you on the board for a while now. Good to see you back.
For me I've found the answer is to drink less, drink better.Lay off the Bud and J.D. in profuse quantities and try a sip of Ardbeg 10 year old , a Springbank 12/100 or a japanese malt like Ichiro's Ten of Spades. You could easily spend an evening just nosing any of these beauties. As for weed,I can't help feeling like I'm really winging it and not getting away with it . It really reduces your concentration and your ambition. My caffeine fix is one quadruple espresso in the morning. Man, I can't even imagine a gallon. That's got to be like drinking battery acid.
I think I've said it before somewhere else on this forum, but the greats who played well stoned or drunk did it DESPITE being addled. We've lost way too many to alcoholism and drug use. What I'd give to see Charlie Parker play today.
Anyway, good on you Jolle.
 

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Jolle,

Way to go man! Keep it up.

I gave up smoking in college (now I'm allergic to cigarette smoke and get a headache when I stay longer than an hour inside a smoky bar), never touched drugs/pot/etc, drink only 1-2 glasses of red wine in the evening (at my wife's insistence. She thinks it's healthy), and have reduced my coffee intake to a couple of cups in the course of the working day (it use to be, not quite a gallon, but a lot). I can do the long tones longer than I used to.

Ben
 
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