Standards. Fundamentals. Basics. They're what you have to know, what you have to be able to do, if you want to be good at something. If you want to be a player, play some songs. Rodgers. Porter. Kern. "The fundamental things apply..." Standards are what you have to know if you want to work or even just to jam - and especially if you want to create your own songs. Standards are what the Fred Hersch Trio plays on their melodic album Dancing in the Dark.