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general shape as the orchestra you have today? Reeds, brass and rhythm, with the basic rhythm 4/4 all the way through?
A lot of people are trying to break away from everything nowadays. There's always that spirit, and I think it will depend upon who's going to listen to it and who's going to buy it, which you can't predict
How about improvisation? Do you think that's going to change basically in style or will it be based on chords the way it is now?
Improvisation styling comes as the result of some one soloist who comes up with a performance that has to appeal. It's just like a guy who introduces .a new flavor in ice cream and it catches on, then everybody wants to do that. When Bechet came East, everybody said, "Yes, man, that's it—let's play like Bechet" Just like all of them. Like Hodges. When he came down from Boston everybody said, "Let's play like Hodges." Like Bird-all the guys were trying to play like him. And Hawk, who I think was the greatest influence and stimulated the greatest change in saxophone style very abruptly.
Do you think there's a possibility of atonal improvisation?
This is a matter of mathematics. Improvisation as far as this particular thing is concerned has to be planned and it has to be said, "Now we start at such and such a place and I will take a theme and play at the rate of 250 light years per second and you will only cover half this amount of ground with this theme." They have to converge at some point and when you say do it and improvise at the same time—how many people are there going to be in the world who will be able to do this? If you're just going to have four or five independent melodies totally unrelated, which never start anywhere together and never end anywhere together, it's a matter of "Go, go, go, and when you get through, you stop, and when I get through, TU stop." That, to me, is not what constitutes atonality. I think there should be a specific aim in each one of the melodies—one specific mathematical relationship. Possibly this will happen.
Do you think the blues in the sense of the 12-bar harmonic pattern will still be played 25 years from now?
Yes, I think so, because blues hasn't shown any weakness yet —that's America. People are geared up to that 12-baj form.