I went to an audition yesterday for bassists for Cornell's four official (for-credit) jazz combos. I went in, and after a few equipment hiccups, I did an excellent job walking through "What Is This Thing Called Love?" (both in straight swing and bossa feels), and then played a pretty solid solo over it--although I did get lost at the tail end of the bridge, but found my place again. The director said he really liked my rhythm and feel and a lot of the stuff I was doing in solos. I never played in jazz band in high school (I didn't take up BG 'til right after graduation) and my reading is terrible, so I didn't go through a big band chart--which I had been told by friends would not affect my chances of making a small group. What pisses me off is that players who didn't do as well as I did walking and soloing on "What Is This Thing" got small-group spots, simply because they could sight-read a relatively simple chart. I realize that sight-reading is an absolutely critical part of musicianship, so I can understand the director's logic. The reason I'm bummed is that every single one of my friends who had been in Cornell combos previously had told me that sight-reading was not important for rhythm section personnel. I left the audition thinking I had made the cut, and when I didn't see my name on the personnel listings for the small combos, I was extremely angry. At least I know what I need to do this semester: work on my sight-reading.