Writings about Music

Amen To All Three

Desert Gardens at the Huntington Library in San Marino

I have been able to get a small audience. It's not the huge audience, but it's enough to be able to play. I appreciate that. (Lee Konitz)


Loving nature and exercise, Lee Konitz and I drove to the splendid Huntington Library in San Marino enjoying the Desert, Camellia, Australian, Californian, Japanese and Rose Gardens, first stopping for fortification with tuna on bagels in Pasadena.

Improvisation is exploration. Same for composition and composition realization.

Glad to be in a time and place where creative and intellectual individuality and diversity is both allowed and encouraged.

Michael Robinson and Lee Konitz celebrating his 92nd Birthday in the West 86th Street Manhattan home where Lee first taught Michael at 19, Lee being 47. Improvisation lessons scheduled for one hour at $20 went on for three hours with no extra charge, Lee telling Michael: "One day you will know the answers to all your questions." Lee told Michael's father that same year, "He's going to make it."

Lee implored me to take up jazz improvisation during our last phone conversation a few months before he left us in April 2020, wishing me to add this to my composing, believing the two disciplines would be complimentary. Amazingly, this has come to be, including recording eight duet albums last month with Eliot Zigmund, the essential drummer for several legendary albums with Lee's cherished friend, pianist Bill Evans.

- Michael Robinson, December 2022, Maui


© 2022 Michael Robinson All rights reserved


Michael Robinson is a Los Angeles-based composer, programmer, jazz pianist and musicologist. His 198 albums include 151 albums for meruvina and 47 albums of piano improvisations. Robinson has been a lecturer at UCLA, Bard College and California State University Long Beach and Dominguez Hills.