Living With- Part 2


I have made some progress with the piece, mostly in developing the groove a little more, and also with starting to establish the structure of the piece. I used the DM1 app to develop the groove that I was hearing. It isn't perfect, but it was a start to get the groove established and lots of fun to improvise over, and continue to explore ideas that could be incorporated in the piece.

I also wanted to explore this ideas of Living with an idea more, which I still hadn't felt like I have been able to do since starting the piece. I heard this great story on NPR this past weekend on WYNC's On the Media all about the concepts in Manoush Zomorodi book Bored and Brilliant. It has been something that I have been thinking about for a long time, this concept that being bored is actually a necessary component of the creative process. I also watched her TED talk , which was great and has a lot to think about, and some challenges that I may try to incorporate into my process.

On a similar note, I keep thinking about another interview I heard on Hidden Brain called The Value of Deep Work in an age of distraction, and I know that I'm not really living with any of these practices in the way that I would like to. What is my compulsion to leave my cell phone on when I'm composing? Am I worried I will miss something important? If I'm living in anticipation of what will come in next for an email or text message, am I really being mindful of what I am working on?

So how can I allow boredom and encourage less distraction in my life with this project? How can I use some mind wandering as part of this process to develop the piece?

I took some time to sketch out the structure a bit more, and let my mind wander a bit to see how I could develop the ideas I already had. I wanted the groove to evolve from a place of less movement, and longer chords , so I began to explore the melody idea and intervals for E-F#-B and the harmonic motion of Emin-C#min7-CMAJ7. I liked the idea of using each of these notes from the melody as pitch centers, exploring the interval relationships from other angles and find shapes and structures that could be explored more.

I also ended up using the melodic fragment of A-B- D which came from the middle section of the melody, as part of the voicings that I used for the opening in the saxes.

I liked the idea of having the same voicings in the piano to attack the notes while the saxes are sustaining the chords. I also added the shaker part in the drums to help establish the motion of the piece with the longer sustained chords allowing the breath and the development of the ideas.

I like the progress I have had, and the direction of the piece, but I'm curious how long I will develop each section before transitioning to the next, and also how to start developing the orchestration ideas in each section.

#LivingWith #JakeStrtevant #Composing #Blog

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