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Re: creative isolation

Thank you, Emmanuel for this extremely long post.
It blocked my mailbox for three days, but its worth it!
I try to answer only to the most important points of it, although there
would be a lot more to say.

>The topic of creative isolation is striking a chord with me: probably
>with many others.  Somewhat off formal list topic, but nonetheless central
>to all of us who want to create.

Agreed. We grow together about some music, so if we exclude these questions
we limit the groops value.

>My main point is that I've never witnessed really potent stuff coming
>from someone who did their thing in isolation (doesn't mean it can't 

I am not sure whether I started the idea of isolation. If so, I did isolate
from musical influences during that period, but not at all personally. I
even invited groups of friends and we watched slides or meditated while I
was playing, so I did have that necessary return, "someone to babble to".

>There is no "tabula rasa", but neither is there some
>autonomous, congenital, pure, "inner voice", in my opinion.

I was not looking for tabula rasa either. The blues licks did not disapear,
but started to sound different in the new surrounding.
I do believe in that "inner voice", and that it is easily overheard because
of the constant input of (louder, produceder) sounds through the ears.

>I don't
>think we can ever escape our musical and tonal conditioning any more
>than we can escape the meanings and nuances generated by the knowledge
>of our mother tongues.

Perfectly agreed, nice comparison. The "inner voice" speaks that language.

>Can we change
>the way we organize our thoughts, perhaps even our personalities, by 
>up a new language?  Perhaps.

I changed a lot in the portugese ambient. I started to understand things
german speaking people are not aware off. Usually there is no word in
german for those things. Now, I do not know whether there is no word
because they were not interested or whether people have not been able to
become aware of a "thing" (rather emotions, concepts...) because there was
no name for it.

>So I think some of this discussion about "going beyond" and expanding
>horizons has a lot to do with the analysis/synthesis process that we
>all go through when we *learn* something new.  No two of us hear and feel
>the same way.  No two of us have the same hands, the same joints for
>fretting or pressing the keys.

This goes for language, for content, it takes more.

>The best way we can love and honor our influences is to make them our
>own.  I think when we bring the music home, deep into ourselves, that this
>is when we innovate ... this is when the synaptic connections are made.


>For me, that inner "pure" voice is something that is sought via a process
>that is dialetical in nature.

So ther is this voice? What does "sought" mean (infinitif?)

>do is then some kind of synthesis of all these factors, many of them 
>to what is out there in the world and some of them unique to you.  Some
>people will be able to cultivate more of what is unique within them.

I would not valorize the unique that much. I highly admire musicians that
are able to interprete a piece the way the composer intended it. I admire
even more, when they can do it with any kind of style. We need such
professionals, at least to back up the ones that only do their unique

>Once you have
>the right primordial soup, all the conditions for life (or music) are
>available, and all you need is the right spark to get some combustion

Right! And this might be the moment you do not want external influences any

>a lot of preparation for making music.  Everybody has to go through this.

It seams that the effort is extremely different. Some just listen once and
then do it the same. But we also observe that the difficulty makes more
creative. The one that has everithing at hand may have less motivation to
find HIS solution.
Since I never will be able to play a piece of composer corectly, I need to
create mine and really profit from all the ingrediants there are available
for my soup.

This is how Pizza and Fejoada (famous brasilian bean dish) had been 
By the poor who had to create something eatable with what they has access 
In the case of Fejoada its tail, ears, nose... what the rich left to the
slaves and generations of big black mamas put all their love into their
fire places...
Once its created, the rich take it over (and they are smart in copying and
marketing!) and sell it expensive in the speciality restaurant.
With many musical styles grew the same way.

>Maybe the rest of creativity is intuition, talent, black magic, luck,
>stubbornness, willpower.  Some people just have to work something over,
>compulsively, till they get it to where it makes sense to them.  There
>is a lot of processing going on.  Maybe a lot of it is going on even away
>from the instrument.

Very agreed!

>As a final note, it is interesting that this line of thought has
>evolved among this group of loopers.  As a looper, is one not
>creating some sort of creative isolation, in so far as one is
>bouncing their ideas off the wall/mirror that looping devices provide.
>Might not a lot of looping experimentation be likened to the game
>of solitaire, in which one is forced to react to the choices that they
>have made in the previous play.

Another interesting comparison. What is this game like?
Looping could not be compared to a chess computer or patience, I think.