How to Pick Up a Jazz Musician

We, in the jazz community, can sometimes get lonely barricaded in our practice rooms or in green rooms.

I know it can be intimidating to see us up on stage, and it may seem that we are some sort of unapproachable deities, and you but a mere mortal. But we are, of course, human. And we, like the rest of humankind, are often found wanting the affections of another.


Sure, we’ll tell you things like “I’ve got no room in my life for love” or “my music comes first” or “baby, it’s just me and my horn”…but we only say that because we’re broke, and can’t afford to take you out on a date. Dinner and a movie is bloody expensive. And chances are, you probably make more money than we do. So, despite our stoic rhetoric, what we really want is for you to make that first move.

So if you’re reading this, and find yourself interested in our affections, here is the Professor’s Playbook for how to pick up a jazz musician.

As stated above, you need to make the first move. So when you approach us on the break of our gig, the first step is to tell us how great we sound, and then offer to buy us a drink. Even if we’re not interested upon meeting you, we will nevertheless accept your drink proposal. It’s most probable that we used up our two free drinks before the gig even started, so chances are another free drink will be welcome. This is your chance to charm us.


Certainly, the offer of a free drink will have us intrigued with your company. You can build on that by offering to buy us dinner sometime. This is another tantalizing offer, and a welcome break from our usual routine of $1 pizza slices, or free dinners at our mother’s place.How to pick up a musician

So once we have agreed on a date- pick a spot for dinner. We’re not fussy about the restaurant, as long as it’s clear that…ahem…you’re paying.

During the course of the meal, here are some acceptable topics for dinner conversation:

-How great we sound
-How talented we are
-How you love to watch us up on stage
-How much better we are than that other guy
-How you love our latest Lerner and Loewe CD (now available at
-How you can’t believe we aren’t more famous than we are, considering how amazing we are at music
-The weather


Now, during the course of conversation, we will most likely spend an hour or so complaining about our mouthpieces, strings, reeds etc. The best strategy of response is to inject the occasional “ugh that’s hard for you” and similar sympathetic support. And try not to let your eyes glaze over when we thoroughly expound upon the pros and cons of Selmer instruments in comparison to King or Buescher.

Sure, we might be self-centered and narcissistic. But it’s only because we are insecure, and like all insecure creatures, we’re missing the validation of a significant other’s affections. Deep down, we just want to be loved. So don’t give up on us. If you adhere to the above, you’ll surely win us over!

And if ultimately your goal is long term, then look no further! Wherever you want to go on life’s journey, we’ll be there to help you. We only want to make you feel safe and secure, but not so tied down that you won’t be able to get to where you need to go! We’ll be with you the whole way, holding you close, protecting you. And if along the way you hit one of many of life’s bumps in the road, we’ll be there, supporting you, holding you steady. So buckle up, and…wait, am I thinking of musicians, or seatbelts?

Anyway, throughout life’s long journey, at times you might feel lost, and even if we can’t you get back on track; you can always count on us being there for you, keeping you safe. And with correct use and adherence to road safety rules, thousands of lives can be saved in the US every year, and with the added protection of airbags…oh yeah, was definitely thinking of seatbelts.



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