H: One of my students at CalArts asked me why I close my eyes when I play. The obvious answer is for concentration, but I told him,
“The first night we opened at the Five Spot, I looked across at the bar and there was Charlie Mingus, Wilbur Ware, Percy Heath, Paul Chambers, and just about every great bass player in New York, looking right at me. And from that moment on, I closed my eyes!”
F: Is that true?
H: Yeah! Not really, but . . . . [Laughs all around.]