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I think if the source of creativity is to be considered with regards to music, then some narrowing of scope would help. There is no one size fits all approach to either composing or improvising so one would need to define the hypothetical individual in question as to background, idiom, schooled versus self taught, degree of exposure to different approaches, conventional, graphic, a combination or no notation at all. Is it composing for the page, with or without being heard as written, solely for the ear, for tape or hard disk? Are the motivations behind the composition emotional, intellectual, programmatic? The answer to your question changes as more of those are determined.

In improv, the idiom one is playing in changes and either narrows or widens the number of choices available at any given moment. So a thorough bass improvisor's approach was different than a Lizst or Scriabin's was, than a dixieland jazz player's polyphony, a bebopper's soloing over chord changes, or a post bop player altering the changes against a given theme, than a free jazzer's action painting in sound, than an Indian Raga, Balinese Gamelan or Shona mbira player's. Is it against a fixed meter, non-metered pulse, arhythmic or whatever happens in the moment. How about so called non-idiomatic improvisation which requires virtuosic listening more than anything and while there may be notes and chords involved they are tangential to the proceedings. Though really in even the most rigid forms the intangibles of phrasing and timbral variation, voicings, etc. are seemingly endless. In my small experience thinking is the last thing you want to do in improvisation. The idea is to get your conscious mind out of the way and interact with what you're hearing. Perceptions about what is working and what isn't is not the same in the moment as in listening to a document of it later.

This may seem like nitpicking, but I look at the context of Poe's statement. To him hearing music would have been an ephemeral experience of a very limited amount of music; some popular songs of the time, parlor pieces, etc. Major pieces of symphonic music might be heard once or twice in a lifetime. He probably knew about Bach and Mozart, likely not Schubert or Beethoven, let alone African, Indian, Japanese or what have you. Today our experience of music is nearly all electronic, that to some degree or another intends to create the illusion of a real physical space, or sometimes emphatically doesn't. We have unprecedented opportunities for hearing sounds from all over the planet. The very definition of the boundaries of what is and isn't music has changed drastically. There are many more ideas in music today than there would have been in the music of Poe's time as the 20th C saw an explosion in the available sound world, conceptual underpinnings and the uses that were and are made of music.

As to where inspiration originates is anyone's guess; not from the ego and the conscious mind though in my opinion.

Briffits

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Subject Views Written By Posted
Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 437 Jergat 09-Feb-04 08:32
Moderator note 120 Richard Fusniak 09-Feb-04 19:18
Re: Moderator note 121 Jergat 09-Feb-04 22:13
Re: Moderator note 104 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 00:23
Re: Moderator note 108 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 00:30
Re: Moderator note 106 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 00:50
Re: Moderator note 106 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 02:17
About the moderation process 113 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 02:54
Re: About the moderation process 99 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 03:07
Re: About the moderation process 115 Cleopatra 10-Feb-04 20:10
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 107 Hoppy 10-Feb-04 00:59
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 103 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 02:38
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 95 Jergat 10-Feb-04 05:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 163 Briffits 10-Feb-04 09:27
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 119 Milo 10-Feb-04 16:17
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 121 Paul Cochrane 10-Feb-04 17:48
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 107 Milo 10-Feb-04 18:11
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 101 David L 10-Feb-04 18:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 92 Milo 10-Feb-04 18:46
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 116 Paul Cochrane 10-Feb-04 18:43
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 93 Briffits 10-Feb-04 22:12
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 105 Milo 10-Feb-04 23:05
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 105 Briffits 11-Feb-04 00:03
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 100 Milo 11-Feb-04 00:07
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 102 Briffits 11-Feb-04 10:25
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 103 Milo 11-Feb-04 15:19
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 98 Briffits 11-Feb-04 20:19
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 96 Milo 11-Feb-04 23:01
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 100 Briffits 12-Feb-04 00:23
Henceforth and forthwith... 118 Milo 12-Feb-04 00:53
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 98 Milo 11-Feb-04 17:08
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 107 Briffits 11-Feb-04 19:17
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 96 Milo 11-Feb-04 19:30
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 106 Hoppy 10-Feb-04 14:55
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 106 David L 10-Feb-04 01:23
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 115 Milo 10-Feb-04 02:15
Music from other spheres 118 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 02:59
Re: Music from other spheres 92 Milo 10-Feb-04 03:11
Possibly wrong again 102 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 03:15
Re: Possibly wrong again 104 Milo 10-Feb-04 03:24
Musical mediums 105 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 12:58
Musical plane 116 Kees 10-Feb-04 13:53
Re: Musical plane 101 Milo 10-Feb-04 15:48
Re: Musical plane 107 Kees 10-Feb-04 16:10
Re: Musical mediums 100 Milo 10-Feb-04 15:49
Re: Musical mediums 112 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 16:14
Re: Musical mediums 96 Milo 10-Feb-04 16:25
Re: Musical mediums 107 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 19:02
Re: Musical mediums 97 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:10
Poo-Pooing "channels" 99 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 22:19
Re: Poo-Pooing 102 Milo 10-Feb-04 23:09
Re: Possibly wrong again 100 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 03:49
Talking of Bach.... 102 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 09:29
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 107 David L 10-Feb-04 18:32
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 88 Milo 10-Feb-04 18:58
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 106 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 02:29
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 114 David L 10-Feb-04 18:39
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 102 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:01
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 100 David L 10-Feb-04 19:12
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 101 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:20
Gifts 91 Jergat 10-Feb-04 20:44
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 107 David L 10-Feb-04 23:35
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 150 Saorsa 10-Feb-04 14:38
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 96 David L 10-Feb-04 19:05
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 152 Saorsa 11-Feb-04 08:29
Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 118 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 15:05
Re: Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 106 David L 10-Feb-04 18:51
Re: Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 109 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:04
Re: Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 97 David L 10-Feb-04 19:13
Listening By Numbers 124 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 15:20
Re: Listening By Numbers 102 David L 10-Feb-04 19:19
Re: Listening By Numbers 93 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 19:43
Re: Listening By Numbers 110 David L 10-Feb-04 23:39
Re: Listening By Numbers 102 Briffits 11-Feb-04 03:11
Re: Listening By Numbers 106 Thirdwave 12-Feb-04 17:46
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 105 Kees 10-Feb-04 15:25
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 94 Hoppy 10-Feb-04 18:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 130 Mark Staab 11-Feb-04 06:08
Work work work 106 Kees 11-Feb-04 10:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 94 David L 10-Feb-04 19:24
Books 98 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 22:36
Re: Books 98 David L 10-Feb-04 23:44
Teachers 103 Richard Fusniak 11-Feb-04 02:08
Re: Teachers 98 David L 11-Feb-04 03:07
Re: Teachers 112 Kees 11-Feb-04 10:16
Re: Teachers 100 David L 11-Feb-04 17:47
The yoga of sound 115 Kees 11-Feb-04 21:55
Re: The yoga of sound 98 David L 11-Feb-04 22:07
Small world indeed 98 Kees 11-Feb-04 22:42
Re: Teachers 99 Richard Fusniak 11-Feb-04 23:24
Re: Teachers 98 David L 12-Feb-04 01:49
Spirtual arrogance and delusion 107 Richard Fusniak 12-Feb-04 02:18
An apology 93 Richard Fusniak 12-Feb-04 12:34
Re: An apology 92 fisherman 12-Feb-04 16:11
Re: An apology 117 David L 12-Feb-04 19:46
The wheel of life. 102 Richard Fusniak 13-Feb-04 01:32
The Catapillar and the Butterfly 106 Milo 13-Feb-04 01:35
Re: The Catapillar and the Butterfly 247 David L 13-Feb-04 02:52
Re: The wheel of life. 93 David L 13-Feb-04 02:50
Re: Teachers 96 Hoppy 11-Feb-04 03:19
Re: Teachers 100 David L 11-Feb-04 17:48
Re: Teachers 100 Hoppy 11-Feb-04 20:08


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