Greatness occurs when your children love you, when your critics respect you and when you have peace of mind.

— Quincy Jones

The most charming Quincy Jones quotes to get the best of your day

I went with Lionel Hampton for three years. Out of that came a trip to Europe.


Not one ounce of my self worth depends on your acceptance of me.


You Make Your Mistakes To Learn How To Get To The Good Stuff


I got in the school band and the school choir. It all hit me like a ton of bricks, everything just came out. I played percussion for a while, and stayed after school forever just tinkering around with different things, the clarinets and the violins.


I learned real early why God gave us two ears and one mouth, because you're supposed to listen twice as much as you talk.


Imagine what a harmonious world it could be if every single person, both young and old shared a little of what he is good at doing.


Music was the one thing I could control.

It was the one world that offered me freedom. When I played music, my nightmares ended. My family problems disappeared. I didnt have to search for answers. The answers lay no further than the bell of my trumpet and my scrawled, pencilled scores. Music made me full, strong, popular, self-reliant and cool.


The people who make it to the top - whether they're musicians, or great chefs, or corporate honchos - are addicted to their calling ... [they] are the ones who'd be doing whatever it is they love, even if they weren't being paid.


I've always thought that a big laugh is a really loud noise from the soul saying, "Ain't that the truth."


Jazz has the power to make men forget their differences and come together.

.. Jazz is the personification of transforming overwhelmingly negative circumstances into freedom, friendship, hope, and dignity.


I tell my kids and I tell proteges, always have humility when you create and grace when you succeed, because its not about you. You are a terminal for a higher power. As soon as you accept that, you can do it forever.


The only music I don't like is bad music.


About Quincy Jones

Quotes 86 sayings
Nationality American
Profession Musician
Birthday October 16

I was reading Omar Khayyam, Kahlil Gibran, Rumi, L.

Ron Hubbard, all sorts of philosophy. Bebop cats are like that. Curious. I wanted to know about everything.


What happens when you get a big break and you haven't prepared yourself? That becomes the biggest mistake you've ever made. I see it happen all the time.


It's easy to get next to music theory, especially between your peers and music classes and so forth. You just pay attention. I had a good ear, so I realized that printed music was just about reminding you what to play.


Every day you must be able to say, I have to get up because I'm needed by someone. As long as you have that, you're healthy.


I used to practice piano for hours, and now, with a synthesizer, you can input the music and the machine perfects the song. That's why we have so many people in the music business who should be plumbers. They don't really understand music because they haven't been trained.


When you're over the hill, that's when you pick up speed.


I got a scholarship to Seattle University and I was writing arrangements for singers and everybody. But the music course was too dry and I really wanted to get away from home.


I go to the favelas in Brazil. It's the same in the South Side of Chicago. It's the same, or just more violent. We're trying to get them to stop selling dope. You see kids with AK-47s, and nine-year-olds with nine millimeters. You know, they don't play. They make us look like nuns.


You have to know that your real home is within.


You can study orchestration, you can study harmony and theory and everything else, but melodies come straight from God.


I chose the trombone because the trombone players in the marching band got to be up front with the majorettes (because of the slides) and I loved that!


It's very freaky in Chicago.There's something in the water there, I don't know what it is. But the actual word Chicago means, in the Indian language, garlic. It was just garlic and mosquitoes there. And that is the roughest city on the planet, and I been to every place in the world.


We were in the heart of the ghetto in Chicago during the Depression, and every block - it was probably the biggest black ghetto in America - every block also is the spawning ground practically for every gangster, black and white, in America too.


There's power in the collective. If you don't believe me, just watch a symphony orchestra with a conductor and 120 people who are thinking about exactly the same thing at the same moment - no babies, no stock markets, no mortgages. Just 32nd notes.


I guess hip-hop has been closer to the pulse of the streets than any music we've had in a long time. It's sociology as well as music, which is in keeping with the tradition of black music in America.


We stole a box of honey jars one time and went out in the woods and took care of the whole box. I don't think I touched honey again for 20 years. I never wanted to see honey again.


Making a record is like painting a school bus with a toothbrush


Editing while you're writing is like strangling the baby in the crib.


You want your parents to say, "Hey, I'm proud of you.

" When you don't hear that, you learn to compensate. You say, "Hell, I don't need their approval. If I get my music right, I'll have everyone else's approval." I didn't understand it then, but I now know that's what happened to me.


When I was about five or seven years old my mother was placed in a mental institution and so we were with our father who worked very hard, and we had to figure a lot of things out.


Hell, nobody knows where jazz is going to go.

There may be a kid right now in Chitlin Switch, Georgia, who is going to come along and upset everybody.


Communications are making this one world.

Back in the day, 400-500 years ago, nobody knew what anyone else was doing. It's on the 6 O'Clock news now. Now we can say, Oh, that's the way they live. Oh, they do that!! Opportunities, the chance to bring about change, it's all based on communication. Communication and jet planes.


To me it's no accident that all the symphony orchestras around the world tune up to the note A. And A is 440 cycles, except in Germany where it's 444. But the universe is 450 cycles. So what I'm trying to say is, I think it's God's voice, melody especially. Counterpoint, retrograde inversion, harmony... that's the science and the craft.


I don't deserve a Songwriters Hall of Fame Award.

But fifteen years ago, I had a brain operation and I didn't deserve that, either. So I'll keep it.


My brother died of cancer two years ago (1998), renal cell carcinoma.

He was my only real brother and I didn't know what to do. I'd never been so desperate in my life.


The relationship with a producer and an artist is really special.

It's got to be love and respect, amazing mutual respect for each other, because that's what makes a good record.


Just blow in it and sound bad for about a year and then make it sound a little bit better, and you get a little band together, and then you get a few jobs. You take four guys that sound half bad, but if they're 25 percent each, they can give 100 percent, you know?


It's the attitude about life, man. Looking at the light instead of the dark. Looking at love instead of fear.


Count Basie practically adopted me at 13.

We became closer and closer and I ended up conducting for him and Sinatra.


I was inspired by a lot of people when I was young.

Every band that came through town, to the theater, or the dance hall. I was at every dance, every night club, listened to every band that came through, because in those days we didn't have MTV, we didn't have television.


If I don't have a mother, I'll let music be my mother.


Empty the cup every time and it comes back at twice as full.

I developed that attitude when I was very, very young, when I decided I didn't want to be a gangster anymore. Whether it's just shining shoes, I said okay, I'm going to do this better than anybody else did it in my life.


After every war, there was a significant change in the music, and I can understand how that happened. If you participate in protecting the country, you think you can be part of it, but you come back home and it's worse than ever.


Thank God, 50 years ago I learned that our entire business is all based on two things; a great song and a great story. Film, television, if you don't have that story, nothing else matters. You don't call anybody else or direct anybody. The same with a song. A great song can make the worst singer in the world a star.


Let's not get too full of ourselves. Let's leave space for God to come into the room.


Benny [Carter] opened the eyes of a lot of producers and studios, so that they could understand that you could go to blacks for other things outside of blues and barbecue. He's a total musician. He was the pioneer, he was the foundation. He made it possible for that doubt to be taken away.


They say a blind hog will find the acorn one day.

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