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On Travis Moore

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Back-in-the-day around these parts, keyboard players played either synths or else a Rhodes with a Clav stacked on top. Travis Moore was one of the Rhodes/Clav players. I was in a band with Travis as a tenor player in a two-trumpet/saxophone horn section in a local jazz/blues band.


Everybody loved playing with Travis. Before Travis joined, the band was a sort of Butterfield type blues band. Travis was a jazz player, though he wasn't about chops. His stuff was about chord and note choices, and rhythmic groove. It was transforming and the band became a different kind of band.


One day, Travis's apartment burned down along with his Acrosonic, his Clav and his two Rhodes*. Travis moved back to Oklahoma. I think there may have been a tax problem.


Some time later another piano player came to town and joined the band. He was, and is a good jazz piano player. He kept hearing from other band members how great Travis was. Oh Travis. You should have heard Travis. Blah blah Travis blah Travis. One day he asked me about it. What's with Travis? Why does everybody love Travis? Was he a monster player? What was it?


I told him no, he wasn't a great soloist. The reason we liked playing with Travis was not because of the way HE played. Rather, we liked playing with Travis because of the way WE played. Simply, he allowed us to be better players.



* At the time of the fire he was playing some more modern epiano which stayed at the gig and thereby avoided the fire.


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