One of the problems that we experience in today’s society is the mental attitude that anything can be got and anything can be fixed and straight away. When you apply this attitude to something like learning a musical instrument the immediacy that we are used to today does not apply. The idea that constant practice is required to achieve anything of any value is an anathema.
In the area of song writing you are going to produce a lot of frogs before you produce a prince I liken this to sifting through the attic; a lot of the stuff that you will come to first of all will be junk until underneath you will find a lost gem.
I am currently in the middle of producing a new album, which is a collaboration between professional musicians and complete amateurs. The idea of this recording is to put me on my back foot so that I actually create something different from the sort of habitual music making that I would otherwise do. So far the songs have taken interesting forms from the obvious Rock to the not so obvious Ska and Reggae mixed with strange Jazz and Oriental flavours.
Once you embrace the expected and the unexpected the good and the bad the easy and the complicated without making any judgements there is a uniqueness to the creative process because you are not falling into the type of habitual pattern that your practice has taken you to. In other words you have to hear in your head before you play or write.
We have just finished our ninth Bluescamp summer school which was an amazing success. Each year improves on the last however I always caution team members and other campers who regularly visit that we cannot always get better and sometimes we have to face something that really didn’t work. Otherwise you become a slave to chasing your own tail, chasing the elusive butterfly of success to mix metaphors and this actually doesn’t help because it lessens the risk taking that I believe that you have to have in order to continue creative situations.
One other aspect of the above is that sometimes we have to destroy the thing that seems to be part of us and part of what we do. I had a friend who was a writer and deep thinker and he would run very successful groups and meetings and then every now and again when they were really going well he would stop doing them. This used to shock and upset people but I understand what he was up to that sometimes you just can’t get any better and sometimes you need to change otherwise it just becomes a habit and you’re going through the motions.
So maybe it’s time to write a song for Rumi’s dance in one or two areas of your life.
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