Jazz has become classical music. We try to play some of the old things we used to do good, really good. I mean you have Beethoven specialists, people who play Beethoven all their lives, the same pieces over and over again. No one ever says to them, “Man, why don’t you change your repertoire?” So they play Beethoven. OK. I play Charlie Parker. I play Thelonious Monk—and I’ll be playing it all my life. The important thing is that it’s well done. If you play it good, it’s good.
—1973 interview, quoted in Klook: The Story of Kenny Clarke, by Mike Hennessey