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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 503 Jergat 09-Feb-04 08:32
Moderator note 150 Richard Fusniak 09-Feb-04 19:18
Re: Moderator note 149 Jergat 09-Feb-04 22:13
Re: Moderator note 134 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 00:23
Re: Moderator note 134 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 00:30
Re: Moderator note 133 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 00:50
Re: Moderator note 131 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 02:17
About the moderation process 140 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 02:54
Re: About the moderation process 129 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 03:07
Re: About the moderation process 143 Cleopatra 10-Feb-04 20:10
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 134 Hoppy 10-Feb-04 00:59
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 132 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 02:38
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 119 Jergat 10-Feb-04 05:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 191 Briffits 10-Feb-04 09:27
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 149 Milo 10-Feb-04 16:17
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 150 Paul Cochrane 10-Feb-04 17:48
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 134 Milo 10-Feb-04 18:11
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 128 David L 10-Feb-04 18:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 119 Milo 10-Feb-04 18:46
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 140 Paul Cochrane 10-Feb-04 18:43
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 120 Briffits 10-Feb-04 22:12
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 131 Milo 10-Feb-04 23:05
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 134 Briffits 11-Feb-04 00:03
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 129 Milo 11-Feb-04 00:07
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 129 Briffits 11-Feb-04 10:25
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 131 Milo 11-Feb-04 15:19
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 125 Briffits 11-Feb-04 20:19
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 126 Milo 11-Feb-04 23:01
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 128 Briffits 12-Feb-04 00:23
Henceforth and forthwith... 143 Milo 12-Feb-04 00:53
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 127 Milo 11-Feb-04 17:08
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 132 Briffits 11-Feb-04 19:17
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 125 Milo 11-Feb-04 19:30
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 133 Hoppy 10-Feb-04 14:55
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 133 David L 10-Feb-04 01:23
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 145 Milo 10-Feb-04 02:15
Music from other spheres 144 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 02:59
Re: Music from other spheres 119 Milo 10-Feb-04 03:11
Possibly wrong again 130 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 03:15
Re: Possibly wrong again 129 Milo 10-Feb-04 03:24
Musical mediums 134 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 12:58
Musical plane 143 Kees 10-Feb-04 13:53
Re: Musical plane 127 Milo 10-Feb-04 15:48
Re: Musical plane 135 Kees 10-Feb-04 16:10
Re: Musical mediums 126 Milo 10-Feb-04 15:49
Re: Musical mediums 141 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 16:14
Re: Musical mediums 126 Milo 10-Feb-04 16:25
Re: Musical mediums 135 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 19:02
Re: Musical mediums 124 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:10
Poo-Pooing "channels" 129 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 22:19
Re: Poo-Pooing 128 Milo 10-Feb-04 23:09
Re: Possibly wrong again 128 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 03:49
Talking of Bach.... 130 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 09:29
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 135 David L 10-Feb-04 18:32
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 116 Milo 10-Feb-04 18:58
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 133 fiascohoho 10-Feb-04 02:29
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 142 David L 10-Feb-04 18:39
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 130 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:01
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 131 David L 10-Feb-04 19:12
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 136 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:20
Gifts 108 Jergat 10-Feb-04 20:44
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 134 David L 10-Feb-04 23:35
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 176 Saorsa 10-Feb-04 14:38
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 124 David L 10-Feb-04 19:05
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 181 Saorsa 11-Feb-04 08:29
Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 148 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 15:05
Re: Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 133 David L 10-Feb-04 18:51
Re: Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 135 Milo 10-Feb-04 19:04
Re: Pray Mr. Lamond, tell me... 122 David L 10-Feb-04 19:13
Listening By Numbers 154 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 15:20
Re: Listening By Numbers 130 David L 10-Feb-04 19:19
Re: Listening By Numbers 122 Thirdwave 10-Feb-04 19:43
Re: Listening By Numbers 139 David L 10-Feb-04 23:39
Re: Listening By Numbers 128 Briffits 11-Feb-04 03:11
Re: Listening By Numbers 131 Thirdwave 12-Feb-04 17:46
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 133 Kees 10-Feb-04 15:25
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 121 Hoppy 10-Feb-04 18:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 157 Mark Staab 11-Feb-04 06:08
Work work work 133 Kees 11-Feb-04 10:36
Re: Music Synchronicity Part 2: Music vs. Idea 120 David L 10-Feb-04 19:24
Books 126 Richard Fusniak 10-Feb-04 22:36
Re: Books 124 David L 10-Feb-04 23:44
Teachers 131 Richard Fusniak 11-Feb-04 02:08
Re: Teachers 124 David L 11-Feb-04 03:07
Re: Teachers 138 Kees 11-Feb-04 10:16
Re: Teachers 126 David L 11-Feb-04 17:47
The yoga of sound 145 Kees 11-Feb-04 21:55
Re: The yoga of sound 125 David L 11-Feb-04 22:07
Small world indeed 126 Kees 11-Feb-04 22:42
Re: Teachers 128 Richard Fusniak 11-Feb-04 23:24
Re: Teachers 125 David L 12-Feb-04 01:49
Spirtual arrogance and delusion 136 Richard Fusniak 12-Feb-04 02:18
An apology 121 Richard Fusniak 12-Feb-04 12:34
Re: An apology 121 fisherman 12-Feb-04 16:11
Re: An apology 147 David L 12-Feb-04 19:46
The wheel of life. 130 Richard Fusniak 13-Feb-04 01:32
The Catapillar and the Butterfly 134 Milo 13-Feb-04 01:35
Re: The Catapillar and the Butterfly 282 David L 13-Feb-04 02:52
Re: The wheel of life. 121 David L 13-Feb-04 02:50
Re: Teachers 124 Hoppy 11-Feb-04 03:19
Re: Teachers 126 David L 11-Feb-04 17:48
Re: Teachers 129 Hoppy 11-Feb-04 20:08


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