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Re: creative isolation

Jason, after Matthias:
> I believed, when I first
>got into the recording business, that each musical "stage" I went through
>was a process of sloughing off my influences, one by one... and by 
>continuing this process, and also by making every effort *not* to try to
>imitate any other musician in terms of technique or compositional
>style, I would eventually arrive at some sort of "pure" form of my own
>musical voice.

Does this lead to a musical "inbreeding" at all?  I have tried to follow a
link from my earliest recordings to the present day and can see one, but
I've absorbed a lot of stuff since then - the Renaissance style is a large
part of my playing, and I'd never heard any of that kind of music for many
years after I started playing.  When has one absorbed enough influences to

>As time wears on I become increasingly cynical about this, perhaps
>agreeing with Brian Eno that there is *no way* to be freed of one's
>influences, and thus the task at hand is not to find your own "pure
>voice", which I take it he does not believe to exist, but instead to 
>come up with the most interesting and unique combinations of such
>influences... "Composting" he calls it.

Thinking about this, we can almost see how, in the absence of hearing _any_
kind of music before, our instruments still tie us to playing in certain
ways.  At the piano you're tied to the chromatic scale but very much
encouraged to play in C major.  Guitar is a bit better, in that all notes
are given equal weighting, but you have to go to the classical strings, or
maybe the trombone, before you're freed up from the influence of the scale
via the instrument.  This is dealing with Western isnstruments only, of


Dr Michael Pycraft Hughes      Bioelectronic Research Centre, Rankine Bldg,
Tel: (+44) 141 330 5979        University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, U.K.
    "Wha's like us?  Damn few, and they're a' deid!" - Scottish proverb