Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Lately, when I find myself picking up my guitar, more often than not I will simply start improvising. Literally, I will lay my fingers down somewhere on the neck and start plucking notes with no forethought of where or what may come out. Often, while doing this, the results will be lackluster. Sometimes, however, the music will just flow, and some strange new thing will emerge much like a person out of the fog. Like a person, it will grow and mature and go somewhere and have something interesting to say. This happened to me the other day.

I almost felt like a radio receiver tuned into the airwaves around me. It felt transcendant.

Afterward, I wished I'd had the forethought to turn on my recorder to capture the moment. That does not happen very often either which, funnily, led to some doubts about whether or not the improvisation would have been as good if the recorder was on. Thoughts are funny creatures. They can be looked upon as negative or positive so easily. Some people are incredibly good at bringing themselves down with their own negative thoughts. Who needs enemies? I really try to not fall into that trap. I am a harsh critic of myself.

Looking at it from the positive angle, I have come to the conclusion that all I need to do is turn on the recorder everytime I pick up the guitar and let it roll. Regardless of what comes out, I should just record it all. Who knows? There could be some good riff or progression that I simply toss off without further ado that would otherwise be forgotten. Who know?

The flipside to this is obvious though. To find the diamond, you have to wade through the rough, and I am not always fond of wading. Oh those thoughts. Like my 5th grade teacher, Mr. Glass, once said, I need to stop thinking so much. He was a very wise man, and I still look to him, believe it or not, for inspiration and knowledge all these years later. Thank You Mr. Glass.

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