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InvisibleSwami
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Making Music: What is Creation?
    #3090900 - 09/04/04 12:44 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

I was listening to some music piece that I had "created". Then I thought: what did I - ME - SWAMI create? Hmmm, let's see: the speakers were designed and made in Germany by people I never saw; the CD player was made by unnamed Sony Engineers; the computer made in Asia; the software I used was designed by small teams around the world; power I was using came from the might Hoover Dam. How many millions of man hours and tens of thousands worked on that?

Who designed the piano many hundreds of years ago and that also being based on earlier stringed instruments and so forth backwards into time until we come to the first man who clacked two stones together?

How many bands and orchestras and soloists and singers have I listened to over my lifetime? What is their influence? Am I borrowing ideas from them and refiltering their music through my experience and perspective ?

Well, I do prefer playing almost all my tunes on synthetic sounds that I design myself. This must be creative right? I am going into unchartered territory so I must not be borrowing ideas? Well how did I design the sounds? On a software synthesizer that someone had the idea in their head and brought if forth from the ether as a gift to us. While the author did not have the EXACT sound in his head that I used; he WAS AWARE of the sonic possibilities of his creation. And what of the 64 pre-designed sounds that came with the synthesizer? Were they not an influence? And what of other synthesists such as Vangelis, Tangerine Dream and of techno, trance and acid styles? And what of the thousand movie tracks that have moved me?

One of the ways in which I design sound is to listen to hundreds of randomizations and pick out the one(s) I like best. Sometimes I fine tune it, other times I adapt my playing to the sound rather than the other way around. Either way the question remains: Did I "create" this sound or was it pre-existing behind an infinite number of doors and I just happened to transport to that world and took a peek? As this sound can be replicated by others; did I ACTUALIZE it or merely get the right combination that I could pass on to others?

If I did not create the sound, the instrument, the amplifier, nor the chords, notes, keys, the idea of pitch, harmony, loudness and softness; seems "all" I did was select which keys to play in what sequence as a culturally accepted (some would disagree strongly when hearing "my" weird soundscapes). But wait! Is this not like the pre-existing synth sound? This pattern was "pre-existing" among the infinite number of patterns and can be replicated by others once this pattern is "discovered".

Suddenly I am not sure WTF I had to do with this process. Certainly I cannot claim it as mine. The idea of control is quite silly though the illusion is strong. The process is using me, not the other way around.

I listen again to the track that "I" have created. In it I hear the sounds of ALL the musicians that came before me and all of the engineers and so forth that made it possible. When I think of it this way, "my" music is somehow intertwined with ALL of mankind; past and present and those to come.


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The proof is in the pudding.


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Offlinedeff
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Swami]
    #3091012 - 09/04/04 01:24 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

I've thought this as well. The piano plays me, and not vice versa.

Nice post, it was a good read :cool:


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Invisiblejux
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Swami]
    #3091260 - 09/04/04 02:35 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

If you stick a thousand monkeys on a thousand typewritters, you'll eventually get a masterpiece. Same concept. Yes, you created it. Sure, anyone else can too, but you did it. It's yours.


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Offlinedeff
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: jux]
    #3091289 - 09/04/04 02:43 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

No it's not though. The instrument has more of a function in creating the soundwaves than the person playing it. You are merely moving your fingers, whereas it does the work of vibrating the air particles. Sure your 'creativity' inspired it to sound that specific way, but so did the air temperature, room acoustics, and especially the instrument itself. You are only one piece of the system :smile:


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Offlinerdnp2035
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Swami]
    #3091342 - 09/04/04 02:56 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Yeah..but you are different from the system itself. The system is coming forward with a thousand tricks and tools..but you are the one experiencing them. You don't have to sacrafice your ego, calking it up to the patterns that got you to this point. If you stopped trying, the music would stop. And if you stopped listening the music would stop. The universe and it's tools and instruments and mediums for vibration are there so that you may go into the feedback loop of experience and expression...so that you may dive into yourself while exposing your soul for all to hear, turning your thoughts, your universe, into reality. A piano doesn't have a soul in the way that you do, and it is that spirit that will make the music out of all the potential at its finger tips.


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Offlinedeff
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: rdnp2035]
    #3091383 - 09/04/04 03:09 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

I know, I'm just saying that if the instrument "stopped", the music would just the same as if you stopped. Don't take credit for the instrument's ability to vibrate the air, but rather only your ability to instruct it to do so in a manner you decide. It's very much a two-way process.


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Invisiblezee_werp
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Swami]
    #3091396 - 09/04/04 03:13 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Maybe it was just that all of the chaos of the universe to date had led to that moment happening? :wink:
Maybe the universe is ultimatley a particle of pure experience, and life has arisen within that experience to actualise and perceive the thing from which it arose. Each human striving to experience more of the overall fractal, mannnnnnn :P
But seriously I do get where you're coming from and indeed its an interesting thought. I would say in one way its not yours at all, however if there was to be one single entity to be held responsible for that piece of music that you 'created', it would be you.


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OfflineGrav
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Swami]
    #3091665 - 09/04/04 04:35 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

I thought about this, too.

In terms of rock bands, pretty much every riff arrangement has been played already- But what really seems to make the difference is how you choose to display it. Is the riff going to be part of a chorus that you tediously repeat every 20 seconds? or are you going to save it for that one cool part right after the interlude where it will count the most? I think if you view a musical piece as more of a three-dimensional object, then you find that the individual has alot of power over the dynamics of how it is to be crafted.

As far as influence, it's an unstoppable force that has been carrying artists for all time. It's in every human.

You could also look at it along the lines of painting or any other visual art medium. The materials are already there.., but its up to the artist as to where to place each dab of paint, and how to organize the overall composition. Without that final distribution, all the effort and man hours put into collecting and producing the pigment have produced no creative result.

I dont think you bring anything 'new' into existence, but you assume the position of the director or composer to work with your little piece of light and/or sound at that specific time which is no doubt a creative process.


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InvisibleSwami
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Grav]
    #3091719 - 09/04/04 04:55 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Good responses all. I was more excited about this thread than many for some time.

Now let's step w-a-y back for a moment. I, as the artist, have the choice of picking a square of red or a square of blue. I pick blue, what a fucking genius I am! Is this creative? What if I had 4 options or 4 hundred or 4 million or 4*10^30? At what point does "pattern choosing" become creative? Is it the shear numbers of possibilities that gives us the illusion of bringing forth something from nothing?

Or does the act of my choosing assign meaning to a heretofore meaningless pattern?

Even perhaps it is all in the presentation; the marketing of the pattern; i.e. the artists' ability to draw others into adopting a slice of his world-view...


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The proof is in the pudding.


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InvisibleSimisu
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Swami]
    #3091733 - 09/04/04 04:59 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

kinda like grav said... music is a language!
and creativety does not stem from a new sound or a new tool... it stems from being able to produce an altogather new expiriance in an interesting way!
in a way... it's exectly like language... anyone of us can write a "song" but how many of us can write a good song? or poem?
words that are used everyday by everyone maybe transformed to poetry by someone capable just like in music!

there is music in EVERYTHING! it only depends on the interpetation of the listener to find it pleasing or not!


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OfflineTwirling
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: deff]
    #3091996 - 09/04/04 06:12 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Quote:

deff said:
Don't take credit for the instrument's ability to vibrate the air, but rather only your ability to instruct it to do so in a manner you decide. It's very much a two-way process.




I play acoustic guitar and string it myself. I adjust the strings so that they are in harmony with each other, and I'm the one who puts my hands on the neck of the guitar to change the tension on the strings.

Most importantly, I'm the one who physically strikes the strings, which, from physics, we all know that inertia is what causes the strings to move after another force causes it to (EDIT: I realized this is Newton's First Law of Motion, inertia is what would bring it to a stop). I am that force. Take me out of the equation, and there isn't any music.

Right now my guitar is leaning against a chair making no audible noise. The only way that will happen is if I do it (outside of an earthquake causing it to vibrate etc..). I also tend to improvise solos, which given the tempo, melody, and a whole host of variables such as effect pedals, type of guitar, amp, all of which I choose and make the settings of, is it not conceivable that I would at some point, create a series of notes/sound that has never before been played? Very likely. I also have a few techniques which I've come up with that I've never heard anyone play before. Does that mean I didn't create the idea? Was Jimi Hendrix just lifting ideas from other people when he played with his teeth or came up with some of those psycho sounds? Probably not.

(I'm just arguing one of the sides here, I also think there is a lot to be said about the organization and history of music having an effect, as well as the fact that the human ear has only an accepted range of what is going to be considered musically pleasing. And I do recognize that there are a thousand and one forces behind the sound that I "create" when I play guitar that I have no control or even awareness of. I do think it's a two way, or perhaps a unimaginable amount of ways you could look at it).


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The very nature of experience is ineffable; it transcends cognitive thought and intellectualized analysis. To be without experience is to be without an emotional knowledge of what the experience translates into. The desire for the understanding of what life is made of is the motivation that drives us all. Without it, in fear of the experiences what life can hold is among the greatest contradictions; to live in fear of death while not being alive.



Edited by Twirling (09/04/04 06:17 PM)


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Offlinedeff
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Twirling]
    #3092012 - 09/04/04 06:18 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Oh sure it may not have been played before, as anytime you play a song it's different at least slightly than the original. If you analyzed the soundwaves, every single song is unique, it's just our labelling process that says that two songs are the "same".

Try making the 'same' music without your guitar and see how far you get. You can do the exact same hand motions - but the air vibrations from this will be inaudible, and even if they were, would probably not be appealing. To play the guitar, you did not have to learn the harmonics and physics behind it's design and then design the wavelengths, tensions, ect to sound pleasing together.

I agree that it's in how you look at it though. But true creation does not have a physical presence :smile:. Not that you probably arent talented at the guitar though, I was just adding some points  :cool:


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Edited by deff (09/04/04 06:19 PM)


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OfflineTwirling
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: deff]
    #3092065 - 09/04/04 06:41 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

According to Merriam-Webster, "creation" is defined as:

1 : the act of creating; especially : the act of bringing the world into ordered existence
2 : the act of making, inventing, or producing: as a : the act of investing with a new rank or office b : the first representation of a dramatic role
3 : something that is created : as a : WORLD b : creatures singly or in aggregate c : an original work of art d : a new usually striking article of clothing

Considering that any art is going to be manipulating physical objects in some way, the specfic way I arranged my music certainly was original. Is the existance of creation dependant on having to create the matter and design behind which is being used as a palate for the artist? No, in fact, what's being created is the art behind the music, not the media by which it's physically being created on.

In fact, in the example of recording the songs I've written, I added more than one instrument to create a singular, but mixed sound. The likely hood of anybody ever playing acoustic guitar, bass guitar, and electric guitar with a phaser, distortion, and in the same exact way I played it is extremely, extremely unlikely.

Now let's take the guitar out of the mix, because you do bring up a very valid point. Without the guitar, there would be no sound. Now what if I sing, which is completely under my control and requires no extrenal objects. I don't have a singers voice, and I don't think anyone would ever pay to hear me sing, but I doubt that in existance of humans that anyone has sung in the exact same frequencey and words that I sing. You even said that if you examined the soundwaves no two songs would ever be alike, and I would think my voice would be very comparable to a fingerprint, in that it's fairly unique. Would that not be an original creation?

(good questions btw)


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InvisibleCJay
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Swami]
    #3092286 - 09/04/04 08:01 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Anyone can cook right?

But some cook much better.

production - the ingredients and the mind meet, what will appear?

Inspiration strikes! From where? And how does it strike those tools into action?

Are we one of inspiration's tools?

Whether using a synth, a guitar, a piano, we are limited by the perameters of the tool. As we are with any tool.

Realising the path of the tool's creation, and too our own creation; the influences and precursors that span back and reach into the depths of time -

This is surely 'depth'.

Richness.

Beauty.

mmm
...connectivity...
...realisation...
:drumming:


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InvisibleMoonshoe
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: CJay]
    #3092398 - 09/04/04 08:35 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

creation is a state of mind in which we tap into the infinite resovoir of 'potentialities' than take some pre-existing media and turn it into a reality that can be experienced by others. It is one of the ways that we as humans can turn our ideas into realities, and take an active part in the evolution of the world.


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Everything I post is fiction. This poster is no longer active.


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OfflineTodcasil
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Swami]
    #3092742 - 09/04/04 10:18 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

i apologize, i didnt have time to read all of the posts, but i read your original swami.

i feel i am a composer. i sequence notes, rythms, chords, etc.

i dont create them... just like with the human populace in general, each person picks how they compose their life, but they didnt create it. they just sequence and react. and reacting is just another word for sequencing.

swami, you just said something enlightening.

peace.


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Men look at themselves and they see flawed humans, we look at women and we see perfect
GODDESSES
Women look at themselves and they seem utterly human, when looking at men they see proud
GODS.


~Casil



:cactus:


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Invisibletruekimbo2
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Todcasil]
    #3092816 - 09/04/04 10:34 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

here is an interesting side question.  last night in my dream i was at a party listening to a song that as far as i know i had never heard before (it did not fit into any musical genre i habitually listen to or that would play on the radio/any of the parties i've been to).

thats not the first time thats happened, often times when i'm bettween sleep and awake i hear music that i don't recall ever hearing before.

do you think i've just heard the music before and it was playing back for no particular reason at those times?  or is it possible the mind can completely create music on its own?  (i personally think the last one)

:smile:


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You can check the last post in my journal for contact info.


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InvisibleMoonshoe
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: truekimbo2]
    #3092942 - 09/04/04 11:00 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

of course the mind can create music on its own. Thats the only way music IS created.


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Invisiblejux
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: deff]
    #3093625 - 09/05/04 02:00 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

maybe so, but as an artist, I controll the system. Without me, the guitar, the drum set, the room, none of it can create music. I am the creative element. I am the one who decides how each note shall sound.
the music is my creation.
And what about when I sing? Or shall I instead credit that to the air and not myself?


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OfflineSpecialEd
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Re: Making Music: What is Creation? [Re: Swami]
    #3093637 - 09/05/04 02:04 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

What if you choose to sing skat and strike your stomach with your hands for percussion?

Does making music like this escape the problems you talked about?


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