ERIC DOLPHY interview Amsterdam April 10/11 1964 after midnight.
After the concert on Friday-evening April 10 1964, of the Charles Mingus sextet in the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, it was already Saturday-morning, Dutch radio-producer, Michiel de Ruyter, (you can call him the Dutch Leonard Feather) had an interview with Eric Dolphy, special for VARA's fortnightly radio program "Radio Jazzmagazine", a program produced by Michiel de Ruyter, Kees Schoonenberg and Aad Bos.
From the private archive of co-producer Aad Bos, we have the privilege to give you the complete text of the interview, that night. It was broadcast 11 days later, on April 22 1964 by the VARA broadcasting corporation, a company in the Dutch Public Radio Association.
Michiel de Ruyter: Just tell a few things that happened, since you were last time here, late sixty one, with Coltrane?
Eric Dolphy: You mean the people I worked with and played with?
MR: What you dug?
ED: I dug playing with Coltrane, that's for sure and the whole group. The whole group was something. You know, memorable music expands and every chance I can, if there's anywhere around I go and play with them.
MR: You played a lot with Mingus so you must like that too.
ED: Oh that yeah. Yes, I like to play with Mingus. Well the thing is there are two different bags. Coltrane is another type of playing and Mingus is another type of playing and so like each of them have something very interesting and something to go after. And, what else will I tell you?
MR: You want to be yourself, of course.
ED: Well definitely.
MR: And in what group you will have a chance for that?
ED: I don't know, all the groups have the best chances for everything. I will stay in Europe for a while, play around, you know, something I wanted. Want to play a lot.
MR: You stay here in Europe for a while?
ED: I will stay a while.
MR: Where you stay?
ED : I don't know where I stay yet, but I'll be here.
MR: You stay after the tour here.
ED: Yes, yes.
MR: Paris or something?
ED Yes, I'll be thinking, I'll be staying in Paris .
MR: You are still developing.
ED: Definitely, oh yeah.
MR: You're still going at it.
ED: Yes and I play with some other groups probably you like to know. I will be working with John Lewis's Orchestra, Orchestra U.S.A, I did some work with him, and eh, I think they are gone on vacation and anyhow they will have one more concert which I want to be able to make, which is this month. And you know they had some good concerts. They play a cross between, jazz and classical music, and John Lewis is the musical director and Gunther Schuller is the conductor. So you see what they have to cross between and even they have guest soloists with the orchestra, Coleman Hawkins plays with the orchestra plus the Modern Jazz Quartet and Gerry Mulligan. Who else will play? That's all I can think about that at the present. Who will be the guest soloist of the group?
MR: Before yourself, I think you like to be in a group where you are as free as possible
ED: Yes, I would like to, for a while. Listen, the thing is, I enjoy playing all kind of ways I feel that, you have a great chance of expressing yourself and broadening by playing, I feel now, that does not have to be right what I am saying what I feel about broadening. The more musicians you play with, certain things will help you, I feel. That develops you, because music, regardless of what it is, what label we put on, it's basically music, and basically it's creative, because when you think about it, when you hear music after it's over, after it's over, it's gone in the air, you can never capture it again, so it's pure creation. When you listen to Beethoven, Brahms, or you listen to Mingus or Coltrane or Stravinsky, Ravel or Duke Ellington or Sonny Rollins, Roland Kirk, any. Oscar Peterson, Ella Fitzgerald, this all has to be and I had some wonderful experience, I'll tell you, I played, and Guther Schuller arranged it, a piece for Orchestra U.S.A. and Leonard Bernstein liked us. He wanted to do it, with the Philharmonic. So we did it with the Philharmonic and I had the chance to play as a soloist in this piece and that was a wonderful experience. Those great musicians, it's great to play with them. Every musician that has his contribution is a great musician whether he has a name or not. Because some man that have a stronger personality that come over stronger than we hear more often, but it takes the musician that you never hear about to make them great, to make the music come to us.
MR: So don't blush now, then you are a great musician.
ED: WeIl I don't know, time will tell, time will tell .
MR: That's what I mean, that I feel.
ED: Time will tell, time will tell, I am still developing yet.