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Kevin Eubanks retires as Jay Leno's sideman: Who should take over the gig?

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Jay Leno’s long-time bandleader Kevin Eubanks announced today that he’s leaving The Tonight Show (or whatever it was called for a while there) after 18 years to “see what else is going on.” You know what that means: There is a valuable job opening in this recession! Jay Leno is saving the economy!

Who should fill Eubanks’ cheerful shoes? Job requirements include a comprehensive knowledge of pop music, excellent timing when signaling for rimshots, the ability to manage musicians (harder than you think), and a strong identification with “the real America.” Those not easily amused by middlebrow standup or the ritual humiliation of regular folks on street corners are encouraged not to apply.

There were rumors flying last week that Max Weinberg wants to ditch Conan for Leno; hopefully, today’s announcement that Coco’s been picked up by TBS will put those to rest. Assuming, then, that Weinberg’s not an option — if it were up to you, Mixers, to whom would you give this gig?

(Follow the Music Mix on Twitter @EWMusicMix.)

More from EW.com’s Music Mix:

Broadway star Laura Bell Bundy kicks off her ‘crazy’ country career: A Music Mix Q&A

Drake’s new “Over” video: Watch it

Justin Bieber’s performance on ‘SNL’: how did he do?

Actor Alessandro Nivola: His Music Mix playlist

‘Green Day: Rock Band’: We’ve got a preview plus the exclusive 47-song track list!