To those who emphasize "originality:" Since the Beatles, and prompted by a dislike on the part of record company accountants on paying royalties, this mostly false claim of "If the artist doesn't pen (or sing into a cassette) the whole disc, it's not original," has frankly taken us to the point of mostly re-written mediocrity. THAT's what's unoriginal, and it borders on the unethical.
Count Basie did not write a lot of tunes, hardly any in fact. He didn't even write arrangements. But he brought a sound and a way of editing arrangements by the likes of Neil Hefti and Quincy Jones that it can be stated that Count Basie changed the way music was played. (By the way, Basie told us he always considered his band a blues band, and to his closest friends he went by the nickname "Arkansas Red.")
Isn't it original to have a blues disc without a guitarist on it? (Do they think I can't afford one, or don't know any good ones?) With our own way of playing the covers, which are not "covers" to me, but good vehicles for expression.
Are all us revolutionaries really ready to revolutionize?
-- Al Copley