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Anxious gatekeeping

Analogous to nervous cluelessness is something we might call “anxious gatekeeping.”   This is desire to police the borders of poetry, or of...

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Completing the circle

I'm half way through the circle of fourths. So I've composed in C, F, Bb, Eb, Ab, and Db. Six out of twelve keys. It is important to complete the circle, not because I need to compose in every single key, but because that will complete my understanding of every note in relation to every other note and achieve more harmonic fluidity. I'm finding now that I put in chords that I'm not sure about. They don't belong to the key I'm working in, but they seem still to fit in somehow. At some point I'll understand, but there is something to be said for intuition as well.

Now when I analyze my first efforts, I see that I was working with a limited palette. Yet one of those early tunes is one I find quite beautiful.

Something will always lag behind. Harmonic knowledge, playing ability, melodic or structural construction. I can play what I write, but that is because I write by playing. I am unable to play the chords in a truly jazzy way, rhythmically. I find my typing is stronger, faster, and more confident on the computer keyboard because of an hour a day on the musical keyboard.

Warmth, sweetness, and beauty are available to me. They are there on the keyboard waiting to be discovered. Every flavor and color is there. For example, a dominant chord is tangy. Major sevenths taste smokey. The interval of the major third is sweet. These are available to anyone, the same way that a raspberry will be tart to anyone.

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