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Freddie Gruber: None of a Kind

Freddie Gruber and Buddy Rich are driving along at 3 a.m. in Palm Springs, heading to a 7-Eleven near Rich’s pad to get a late night nosh. They’re kibitzing back and forth, as old-school New Yorkers tend to do, when all of a sudden Rich blurts out, “Jesus Christ, Gruber! You’re one of a kind, man!” One year later, Rich and Gruber are driving along that same stretch of road in Palm Springs, heading to the same 7-Eleven at three in the morning when out of nowhere Buddy blurts out, “I changed my mind. You’re none of a kind!”

This is one of many classic Freddie Gruber stories-apocryphal or not-that many of his students like to tell.

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