A great article written by Robert Baldwin about how we need to keep our minds open to perception as musicians. I, myself, have a very different “style” than many of my fellow musicians. I have chosen not to be employed in music so I can enjoy it more. Many other musicians appreciate or enjoy music more due to the fact that they deal with it every hour of their lives. I am also glad, like Dr. Baldwin, that we have the freedom of expression in the United States. Please give this a read!
Perception is a major aspect of a musician’s life. We perceive sound, rhythm, and phrasing and relate it to all of the stimuli around us, from our fellow musicians on stage to the drone of an air handling unit. Hopefully, our attention is focused and blended with those around us. Often times it is not. And we can get pretty fussy about the score and the notes that are within, claiming some sort of ultimate authority on the subject. But doing so without regard to different options, interpretations, and traditions can create assumptions that may actually block creativity. As Joseph Campbell reminds us:
“Our human species…is distinguished by the fact that the action-releasing mechanisms of its central nervous system are for the most part…”open.” They are susceptible to the influence of imprintings from the society in which the individual grows up.” –Joseph Campbell, the Importance of Rites, 1964
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