Musical Mentors


Joe SampleI can say with confidence that NONE of us would be where we are today without the teachers, coaches, and mentors that have graced our path. The next generation of artists and those who aid them will need these people even more.

I speak on panels frequently and one of my favorite provocative statements is “If You Can Read It In A Book… Don’t Do It” Not because I am against reading or studying the past but because the music business is moving so fast that it is almost impossible to keep up with the published word.

The advice I gave 6 months ago is not the same as what I give now and in some cases it is 100% the opposite. We are now back to sitting around the fire and swapping stories about the best hunting grounds. Like wild game the entertainment business is always on the move and we must form tribes to share or knowledge and band together to take down big game.

It is urgent that those of us with knowledge pass it on to the next generation. Last Friday we lost one of the great artists in Jazz, Joe Sample. Tomorrow people from all over the world will travel to Houston to pay their respects.

Respect is the perfect word because Joe will be remembered not only for the gift of his talent but for the giving of his time. He returned to his home town and taught at TSU where he mentored countless your Jazz musicians. Donated his time to perform a fund raiser for his high school every year. Produced music for other artists and toured the globe sharing his talent.

The lives he touched as a mentor may never be measured but it will surely be as lasting and as meaningful as the music he made.

RIP Joe Sample a true crusader

Barry Coffing/Weget Founder