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Showing posts from August, 2016

Nature as Nurture

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I've been hanging out in California for almost 2 weeks. In that time I've been to the ocean, I've been to the mountains, and I've been to the city. In each case, I've spent a lot of time listening to the sounds around me and absorbing the rhythms. There is so much we can learn from our surroundings just by paying attention. How often do we just go through our day giving little regard to the natural things happening around us?


Oceans of rhythm
I spent this afternoon at the beach, walking in the surf, listening to the waves crashing, paying attention to everything going on around me. I heard new and different rhythms. I felt new and different impulses in my nervous system. I learned from the wind and waves things that I can bring back to my music. I learned things you can never find in books.

Wherever you live: ocean, desert, forest, or city, take the time to listen to the world around you and absorb the sounds and rhythms.

~ MB


Deconstruct Yourself™

The Experience of the Live Experience

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(Listening to the Sounds In Your Head)

Playing improvised music is an interesting experience. While you can practice rudiments, beats, scales, and other ideas, you can't really practice improvising. Sure, I can play away in my studio all day long—and I do, working on ideas, looking for sounds, finding different techniques—but it's not the same as playing in front of people, or with other musicians. This is because, at least for me, improvising is a reactive experience. When I'm playing in an improvised setting, I'm reacting to everything around me: the room, the audience, the other musicians, my mood, and even how my instruments sound and react at that specific moment. This is very different from playing notated music.

Because of this, I find that playing live is always a new experience for me. Rather than playing in a band and following a set list, where the same songs are played in the same order every performance, I never know what to expect. To me, the most exciting …