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Re: another survey (wasRe: OT, but getting close to not-OT: guitar/sax improv sessions)
On 6 okt 2007, at 14.46, Paul Mimlitsch wrote:
> 1) how many people on the list do solo non looping gigs?
Sometimes. Not very often though, since there isn't any natural forum
for solo concerts. I've mostly played non looping solo concerts for
art exhibitions. One time I used a sax and walked around among the
visitors while playing, making a point of the different acoustics of
the different halls.
> 2) "the beauty of the single note line" - how many guitar players/
> players of multitimbral instruments can do an improv. gig using
> only single note lines and hold an audiences attention? for how long?
I don't see that this would be more difficult on a polyphonic
instrument compared to a monophonic? "The beauty of a single note
line" does not reside in what you play but what you do not play, but
rather create the set-up for the listener to fill in by his/her
imagination. To play that way you need to hear and react to not only
the sound of a single note but also its attitude and suggested
directions by that note. Non-musicians hear this easily, but somehow
many players don't bother with this in my humble opinion most
important aspect of playing music.
> 3) if you're not comfortable doing this, is that because of
> preference (ie: vertical vs. linear hearing)?
When I was a child I sometimes hid under a grand piano and
experienced some vertical hearing ;-)) In other words; "I'm sorry, I
can't understand this question". ;-)
> Being raised on a particular instrument?
No. Of course one instrument was the first I learned, but I wouldn't
call that "being raised" on it.
> Or did you gravitate towards your preferred instrument due to how
> you hear things?
No. I gravitate towards new instruments when I get too bored with the
instruments I already use. Today there's not much such boredom
though, since I have learned at least four different instruments well
enough to play rather freely. So I can always move on to another one
when in need for wider perspectives.
> 4) if you play a mono timbral instrument (horns etc) is the desire
> to "loop" a means of filling up vertical space to compliment your
> single note line play?
Hmm... when you say "vertically", do you mean instantly sounding? (as
in a orchestra score?) Well, never mind. The answer to this question
is "no". I look at loopers more as a way to extend the instrument.
Kind of the same urge that forces me to trim vibrato bars, modify
mouth-piece sound chambers, knock away frets, program synth sounds
etc etc. Even when playing polyphonic instruments, as the guitar, I
like doing monophonic melody lines. And, as said above, what I like
is not what is heard but the open horizon it brings. The harmonies
and chord sequences implied but not explicitly played. I think Luis
Armstrong was quite early in doing this in his singing, "scatting" a
short phrase after the actual lyric line just to give a clue for a
On 6 okt 2007, at 16.49, Paul Mimlitsch wrote:
> I've always wondered why someone chooses a particular instrument as
> their "voice"
My "musical voice" is something I have been aware of since I was
three and a half years old, long before starting to play music. It's
not directly about "sound" or any certain instrument. Music has
simply become the most efficient way for me to explore this area.
When I hear certain instruments I can tell if it would be a proper
expression for me, and then I learn to play it to match my "musical
> Another question I should have asked in my original post was: How
> many people have switched instruments to meet their needs.
No instrument is perfect, but humans are extremely multi faceted
beings. Switching is just a way to get along a little better. When
playing in bands I have of course picked up whatever instrument
needed for the collective project. I guess that's means the answer
"yes and no" (switching seriously just for fun but sometimes also
because a band situation needs it).
Greetings from Sweden