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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 462 Jergat 09-Feb-04 08:32
Moderator note 126 Richard Fusniak 09-Feb-04 19:18
Re: Moderator note 127 Jergat 09-Feb-04 22:13
Re: Moderator note 112 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 00:23
Re: Moderator note 115 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 00:30
Re: Moderator note 112 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 00:50
Re: Moderator note 112 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 02:17
About the moderation process 119 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 02:54
Re: About the moderation process 105 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 03:07
Re: About the moderation process 121 Cleopatra 10-Feb-04 20:10
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 112 Hoppy 10-Feb-04 00:59
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 110 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 02:38
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 102 Jergat 10-Feb-04 05:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 169 Briffits 10-Feb-04 09:27
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 126 Milo 10-Feb-04 16:17
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 129 Paul Cochrane 10-Feb-04 17:48
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 113 Milo 10-Feb-04 18:11
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 109 David L 10-Feb-04 18:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 99 Milo 10-Feb-04 18:46
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 121 Paul Cochrane 10-Feb-04 18:43
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 100 Briffits 10-Feb-04 22:12
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 111 Milo 10-Feb-04 23:05
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 111 Briffits 11-Feb-04 00:03
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 108 Milo 11-Feb-04 00:07
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 109 Briffits 11-Feb-04 10:25
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 110 Milo 11-Feb-04 15:19
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 105 Briffits 11-Feb-04 20:19
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 104 Milo 11-Feb-04 23:01
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 106 Briffits 12-Feb-04 00:23
Henceforth and forthwith... 124 Milo 12-Feb-04 00:53
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 105 Milo 11-Feb-04 17:08
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 114 Briffits 11-Feb-04 19:17
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 102 Milo 11-Feb-04 19:30
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 112 Hoppy 10-Feb-04 14:55
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 113 David L 10-Feb-04 01:23
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 122 Milo 10-Feb-04 02:15
Music from other spheres 124 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 02:59
Re: Music from other spheres 98 Milo 10-Feb-04 03:11
Possibly wrong again 110 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 03:15
Re: Possibly wrong again 110 Milo 10-Feb-04 03:24
Musical mediums 112 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 12:58
Musical plane 122 Kees 10-Feb-04 13:53
Re: Musical plane 107 Milo 10-Feb-04 15:48
Re: Musical plane 114 Kees 10-Feb-04 16:10
Re: Musical mediums 107 Milo 10-Feb-04 15:49
Re: Musical mediums 119 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 16:14
Re: Musical mediums 102 Milo 10-Feb-04 16:25
Re: Musical mediums 112 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 19:02
Re: Musical mediums 102 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:10
Poo-Pooing "channels" 106 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 22:19
Re: Poo-Pooing 109 Milo 10-Feb-04 23:09
Re: Possibly wrong again 106 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 03:49
Talking of Bach.... 108 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 09:29
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 113 David L 10-Feb-04 18:32
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 94 Milo 10-Feb-04 18:58
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 112 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 02:29
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 122 David L 10-Feb-04 18:39
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 108 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:01
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 108 David L 10-Feb-04 19:12
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 109 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:20
Gifts 99 Jergat 10-Feb-04 20:44
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 113 David L 10-Feb-04 23:35
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 156 Saorsa 10-Feb-04 14:38
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 102 David L 10-Feb-04 19:05
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 159 Saorsa 11-Feb-04 08:29
Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 125 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 15:05
Re: Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 112 David L 10-Feb-04 18:51
Re: Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 115 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:04
Re: Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 104 David L 10-Feb-04 19:13
Listening By Numbers 131 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 15:20
Re: Listening By Numbers 108 David L 10-Feb-04 19:19
Re: Listening By Numbers 100 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 19:43
Re: Listening By Numbers 117 David L 10-Feb-04 23:39
Re: Listening By Numbers 108 Briffits 11-Feb-04 03:11
Re: Listening By Numbers 112 Thirdwave 12-Feb-04 17:46
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 112 Kees 10-Feb-04 15:25
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 101 Hoppy 10-Feb-04 18:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 137 Mark Staab 11-Feb-04 06:08
Work work work 112 Kees 11-Feb-04 10:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 101 David L 10-Feb-04 19:24
Books 106 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 22:36
Re: Books 105 David L 10-Feb-04 23:44
Teachers 111 Richard Fusniak 11-Feb-04 02:08
Re: Teachers 105 David L 11-Feb-04 03:07
Re: Teachers 118 Kees 11-Feb-04 10:16
Re: Teachers 106 David L 11-Feb-04 17:47
The yoga of sound 122 Kees 11-Feb-04 21:55
Re: The yoga of sound 104 David L 11-Feb-04 22:07
Small world indeed 104 Kees 11-Feb-04 22:42
Re: Teachers 106 Richard Fusniak 11-Feb-04 23:24
Re: Teachers 105 David L 12-Feb-04 01:49
Spirtual arrogance and delusion 113 Richard Fusniak 12-Feb-04 02:18
An apology 100 Richard Fusniak 12-Feb-04 12:34
Re: An apology 99 fisherman 12-Feb-04 16:11
Re: An apology 124 David L 12-Feb-04 19:46
The wheel of life. 109 Richard Fusniak 13-Feb-04 01:32
The Catapillar and the Butterfly 113 Milo 13-Feb-04 01:35
Re: The Catapillar and the Butterfly 266 David L 13-Feb-04 02:52
Re: The wheel of life. 101 David L 13-Feb-04 02:50
Re: Teachers 102 Hoppy 11-Feb-04 03:19
Re: Teachers 106 David L 11-Feb-04 17:48
Re: Teachers 107 Hoppy 11-Feb-04 20:08


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