How do you get to Carnegie Hall?

Musicians like to tell jokes, and for years one of the most famous was:

Q: How do you get to Carnegie Hall?

A: Practice!

Well, tonight I’m going to see a friend of mine conduct a concert at Carnegie Hall, and I remembered something relating to this joke.

Sometime about 2005, I took a taxi to Carnegie Hall for a rehearsal I was playing with the NY Pops orchestra that evening. (They were doing some of my arrangements too so this was pretty exciting!). I got in the cab and couldn’t resist having a little fun with the famous joke. The driver asked me where I was going and I replied, “How do you get to Carnegie Hall?” I fully expected him to laugh and say “practice,” since at one time I’m sure every cab driver in New York City knew this joke.

Instead, he simply said, “Take a left at 57th Street?”

Yes, the times they are a-changing, and musical humor is no exception. (And by the way, I’m still looking for a good punchline to the question “How many pianists does it take change a light bulb?”) Please leave a comment below if you have a good answer for that!

Have a great day 🙂

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