Pharoah Sanders Hears Jazz for the First Time

HEARING JAZZ LIVE FOR THE FIRST TIME [:60]

RUFFIN: NOW A JAZZ MOMENT

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TO HEAR LIVE JAZZ AS AN UNDERAGE TEEN IN LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS, PHAROAH SANDERS HAD TO GET CREATIVE.

SANDERS: One time my band teacher was playing in a club, a nightclub. I knew I was too young to go in, so I went and got an ink pen and tried to make a little mustache here and there. I had a suit. I had a shirt and tie and jacket, and I had some dark glasses on. So I thought I'd try to sneak in the club.

RUFFIN: THE PLAN WORKED.

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SANDERS: They let me on in. I sat down, listened to the music. Then, my band teacher peeked around and saw me. He started laughing. I guess he couldn't believe it that I was there. That's when I heard live music. It made me think one day maybe I could play like that.

THIS JAZZ MOMENT WITH NEA JAZZ MASTER PHAROAH SANDERS WAS PRODUCED BY THE NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE ARTS.

Excerpt of “Trane’s Blues” composed by john Coltrane and performed by Miles Davis and John Coltrane from the album, Bluing, used courtesy of Concord Music and by permission of Prestige Music Co. c/o Bicycle Music [BMI].