Oral Histories

Deone Skewes

b.1920

Deone Skewes

Q: Well, they probably assumed you were paid by the Sleights, as far as that goes.

A: Probably.

Q: So, what sort of music do you like?

A: Well, you know I look at it this way, I got the practice and I got the dinner so I was coming out ahead.

Q: So you play anything? Are you a classical pianist?

A: Yes. All through school I took classical and I did, up to a few years ago, play classical music as well as pop tunes and jazz and all that.

Q: Do you play by ear?

A: Yes. But I also play by note.

Q: So this fellow who asked you to play Stardust…you could just go ahead and play it?

A: Yes. Go ahead and play it. I would have a hard time remembering what to play so I had this little book and I would write down everything I played so I could remember and just refer to the book.

Q: You had the name of it?

A: Then I put it in alphabetical order and I had about 300 songs there that I could play and I just looked at my little note book. Finally one man and his wife were sitting by the piano having their dinner and he asked me to play a certain thing and his wife said, “No. Don’t do it because, don’t you see she is playing in alphabetical order and she will get to it pretty soon.”

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