I was doing a festival in Bismarck, ND that had some heavies on the blotter…Jaki Byard, Alan Dawson and many more…we were there with my bass hero Ray Brown. It was my birthday and I was to do some duet work with Ray and then a few pieces with Jaki. It was exciting. I played my duets with Ray and had a silly tiff w/ Jaki about 3 chords in an Oscar Pettiford piece…(another story entirely). Anyway, I was talking with the late master of jazz drumming Alan Dawson about time and how he manipulated it. He told me that if you are in touch with the rhythm of the person you are playing with, you can make them sound good no matter how weird they get…it takes a smile and a keen sense of humanity.