I spent this beautiful evening doing work in the park, then watching the first 25 minutes of a bad play that should've been a good play, leaving early, finding booze, getting invited to a spontaneous stewed lamb, roasted potatoes, kale and salad dinner, eating it atop a friend's apartment building out of the pots with our hands, with lovely views of the GW Bridge, the Hudson River, and the few sprinkles of stars that Manhattan gets to see on clear nights, all with a gentle, clean(ish) summer breeze. It was a night to remember. And with lots of good conversation, too.
Matthew, turns out, has been dabbling in improv, too. It so happened that he had been contemplating some of the same things that I have been contemplating. One of them was musical language, which I briefly wrote about yesterday. (He can weigh in here if he wants to about that.) Another was the idea that the people who are best at creating music are the young, because they know nothing, and the old, because they know everything. I had mentioned that I wanted to be like a child again, because they just do what they like to do naturally... no inhibitions or predispositions. They explore the world, every little bit, and end up discovering beauty and interest in things and places that most adults wouldn't give a second thought to. Why, as adults, do we ignore the details? And why do we disallow ourselves to follow the rabbit down the rabbit hole? (Shoot, as I edit this, I'm realizing that I'm opening a door into an entire chapter of discussion. I should probably just quit with what I've got. Let's see if I can word my way out of this. Hmmm. No. Let's just jump to a new paragraph while the night is still young at 2:41am.)
I understand that as adults, we have responsibilities to ourselves or our partners, and people that depend on us. But why do we care so much about what is thought of us that it prevents us from trying new things that we're interested in? Is it because we only want to do things that we'll be automatically good at? Is it a time issue? Or maybe not wanting to spread ourselves thin... as Vlada suggested, not wanting to be mediocre at the things we invest ourselves in. It all makes sense, but somehow I'm not okay with that limitation. It's hard to know how to get out of that... I guess in some ways this whole project is a way out of it. We'll see in a year.
So today, I wanted to try something a little bit different. Yesterday I tried to conceive an entire conversation in Mandarin (free improv), and while it might have been fun, I ended up not really knowing what I said (played). Today I tried to use a little bit more English (classical) in my improv. It's much less dissonant, and certainly more harmonically structured. I still have a lot of trouble with an automatic ingrained chordal structure, but it's definitely more towards a sort of "classical style."
I'm going to put two improvs on for today. The first one is pretty straight forward, and I got a little scared that it was going to end up sounding really corny. The second one was a kind of take on a Bach solo cello something or rather, not really a suite, since it's not very dance-like, but in that vein. It's all for the left hand. Oh yeah, and sort of strange... they sound kind of similar. Is that normal?
Here we go, Day 3: