Check this out a performance at Daryl Hall's house by Hall,Jimmy Wayne and particularly the violin player. He doesn't read or write music but plays 27 instruments.Oh he's 22 yrs old. Pretty incredible player and its interesting alot of the singers like Mariah Carey,Christina Aguillera,ok Madonna don't read music and I doubt play an instrument.Duke Ellington and I think Basie had his players memorize music which is obviously different than not reading music at all. Other than classical music,composing playing by ear has great advantages over reading music.What do you guys think? I remember a story of Bob Mintzer about Michael Brecker this is when he first met Brecker and played with him in I think the Jaco Pastorius band(might be wrong).Mintzer is one of the top saxophonists/composers today but he was saying Brecker baraely looked at the chord changes of this tune and it was a typical tune and just wailed on it while Bob had a much harder time with them. http://www.livefromdarylshouse.com/index.php?page=ep26
Whoops guess you have to click the tune on called Knock On Wood the last tune.