On jazz students:
- "My students come in and they can't listen because their first (music) education was reading," he shares. "That's backwards! Your ear is the most important thing in music and you have to start by really listening."
- [H]is wish to get music out of the classroom and back into the streets more where young people will learn it the same way they learned to talk. Music, he points out, is a language, one he thinks we should learn from a young age.
- [S]tudents are learning someone else's version of a composition rather than listening and figuring it out for themselves.
- "I didn't just listen. I studied. I didn't realize it at the time, but I was studying the music and that developed my ear."
- "[Students] go to school to learn jazz which means they miss out on a whole lot of stuff. If all they are studying is jazz, they are not studying music. They need to study music and then they can play whatever they want."
- "Listen to the dictionary definition for improvise: 'unstudied, off-hand, unprepared, unplanned,'" he reads from the dictionary app on his iPhone. "I resent all of that. I've studied too hard over all these years to have what I do described that way." The term Bartz uses instead is "spontaneous composition." Practicing some days for 12 hours at a stretch, he says he knows what he is going to play, even if it is only the second before he plays it. He only improvises if he makes a mistake.