I’ve been meaning to write this little bit of advice for eons, but keep forgetting. Finally I’m getting to it!

Some years back I was playing a concert with a younger player (NOT in my section) who came to the concert without wearing the requested concert attire. When a friend of his came to chat with him he said, “What’s with the clothes?” His response, “No one can see me anyway, so it doesn’t matter.”

No. It matters. It matters greatly.

This young player made sure I would never recommend him for a job in a group I play in. Others heard what he said as well, and I’m betting I wasn’t the only one taken aback by his not caring how he appeared.

Be careful what you say. Always.

Now, to be fair, I confess I’ve been known to say stupid things, and I have to watch my tongue as much as the next person. (But I would never break a concert dress rule. Ever.)

So that’s it. Just a wee bit of advice that, I hope, no one but that one player ever needs to hear.

Side note: there are other bits of advice I would love to give. I have written an etiquette page, but I doubt anyone reads that. I sure see a lot o younger musicians who don’t know some simple little “rules”.