Parker performing at the 2002 Bonnaroo Music Festival in Manchester, Tennessee.
February 14, 1943 |
Kinston, North Carolina, United States
|Genres||Funk, soul jazz, P-Funk|
|Occupation(s)||Musician, band leader|
|Instruments||Saxophone, flute, vocals|
|Labels||Verve, What Are Records?, Heads Up Minor Music|
|Associated acts||James Brown, Maceo & All the King’s Men, Maceo & the Macks, The J.B.’s, Parliament, Prince, Horny Horns|
You have to love what you do. And in order to do that, you have to search your soul to find out what it is that you really are about. And then when you find it, if you're lucky enough to be in a position to do what it is that you love, it becomes easy. I'm blessed that I ended up doing exactly what I wanted to do.
When I grew up, the thing boys would do during the summer is work tobacco because it was a cheap product back then. I didn't want to do that. From an early, early, early age, I was like, 'I like music. This performing thing comes easy.' And perhaps that's how I ended up doing what I'm doing today. Being a musician.
I've always loved performing and, especially, love for the people. That's what keeps me going.
People have different takes on clothes and what to wear and colors and all that stuff, so why make a big deal about uniformity? It took me a long time to grasp that particular concept, simply because I was coming from the James Brown thing. Again, I wouldn't trade that experience for anything.
Me and my brothers started a musical group early on, and we were playing in places where we really weren't supposed to be.
I'm really at ease in being me and going all around the world playing music. But I do get a lift once we start. I'm humming stuff in the dressing room and smiling, looking at myself and making sure I don't have nose hair! But once I get really close to the stage, and the guys are doing the intro thing, I do get a pick-me-up.