Composer Mikel Rouse carries a sketch pad with him wherever he goes. Today I ran across this treasured cartoon he drew in 1993 depicting himself, me, and Ben Neill sitting at Rudy’s Bar at 44th and 9th, as we did almost weekly (they with beers and me with a scotch, scrupulously so depicted), capturing the moment at which we went from merely talking about the kinds of multitempo structures we were interested in to actually considering it a new musical movement. Mikel and Ben look 16 years younger here than they do now, but somehow I already look as old as I do now – sort of a Dorian Gray effect? I’m only a few months older than those guys.
UPDATE: Several years ago Mikel and I went into Rudy’s. Standing at the bar, I said, “Look, they’ve added some nice tile and decorations behind the bar.” Mikel looked at me and said, “That’s always been there – they’ve just outlawed smoking in bars.” I’d never been able to see the back wall for the cigarette smoke.