Pip Eastop, Horn player, Photographer, Trumpet player

Horn player, Photographer, Trumpet player

Posts tagged “lesson

Letter to Kenny Wheeler,

On the way back from taking the kids to nursery this morning I bumped into the great Sir Kenny Wheeler – who lives just around the corner.

It was a great bumping into. As soon as I got home I wrote this letter to him:


Dear Kenny,

It was great to see you this morning. Here, as promised are the two minidisk copies of the concert at “The Wardrobe” in Leeds with Peter Erskine and the Creative Jazz Orchestra, 25th May 2001. It’s as good a recording as one can get, I think, being digital copies direct from the master. It was very kindly copied for me by Steve Shepherd of “Somethin’ Else” who engineered the recording for the BBC. I pestered the poor fellow for weeks, by email, until he finally cracked under the nervous strain and sent me a copy.

For me, that little tour was a great musical event. It’s not often one gets to play with one’s musical heroes (that’s you, and Peter and John Taylor) so I couldn’t rest until I had a copy of the recording. And talking of pestering… You did say this morning that I should come over sometime and play with you and we talked about arranging a date in October. I’m back from Japan around 4th October and I have put a note in my diary to phone you up and harass you until we fix up a date. I’ve been doing a lot of practice on my cornet and things are beginning – just beginning – to take shape. I’m very much a novice, though and I hope you won’t be too appalled at my efforts, or my shaking legs (I’ll probably be very nervous).

I’m very serious about learning to play jazz. I’ve been hard at it for a couple of months now, on my cornet (and I’ve ordered a flugelhorn) and my fingers are getting to know the scales. Luckily, it hasn’t completely screwed up my horn-playing embouchure, or confused the fingers of my other hand. I wrote a letter to you a few weeks ago but in the end never sent it because I thought it would be too much of an imposition on you, and that you would be too busy, etc. What my letter said was that I’d love to have a jazz cornet lesson with you sometime and was wondering if you ever did any teaching and if you would consider taking me on, even for just one lesson, etc…

So you can imagine my delight on seeing you this morning and hearing you actually invite me over to play. Incredible! Today, I will do sixteen hours of practice.

I hope you enjoy the recording – and I’ll give you a call in early October.

All the best,
Pip Eastop

Kenny Wheeler – trying a Schagerl trumpet

Kenny Wheeler

Kenny Wheeler