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Re: lawson's missive (was kc)

<Hedewa7@aol.com> put forth:

> steve@steve-lawson.co.uk writes:
> >- there's
> >an element of affectation in there, and some
> >silliness, but also the desire in all of us to stand out in some way,
> >nicely brings me onto what SPG said...
> >> >In any event I was looking for something that *I* could get my own
> distinct
> >> >sound out of, as opposed to attempting to replicate the work of 
> >> >Fripp or Eno.
> >> >I threw out or erased more material I'd composed just because
> >> >it sounded like someone else's stuff
> >Is it more important to be 'original' or be 'good'? We all love the
> >that we could be innovators. Some of us (DT being
> >a bright shining beacon of innovation in our midst) are,
> i consider myself to be 'forward-thinking', but not particularly

I think that one can be quite original and have absolutely no command of
their relative instrument.  In such a case being "good" (or at least
sounding "good") is at best a crap shoot; but on the up side of this (and
there is one!) watching someone eke what they want - or what they perceive
as good - can be quite entertaining (and I don't mean this in the comedic
sense, though I wouldn't rule it out!).

I should say though that over the past 25 years of recording my various
compositions, I finally learned one important thing once I wasn't so poor
that I had to recycle my tapes at least (are you listening?): DON'T THROW


In a return to pop-style material several years ago, this musician/composer
found himself calling up an old girlfriend from 20 years before, and
futilely asking her if she still had that tape I made for her with this
"really great song on it".  Do I need to tell you she no longer had it?  I
ended up having to recompose the piece from memory.  Strangely enough, it 
now intact with the exception of most of the lyrics - but still it would
have been far more fun, and far less time-consuming, to just have the @#$%
recording that I'd recorded over sometime in 1981.  Do I need to repeat it?


> >So is it more important to be original than good?
> it's more important to be 'personal', imho.

This was the substance of a rampage we had on this list several months ago,
I recall.  I think it's important to be original - and that's rather 
unless one's only ambition musically is to play cover songs.  At this other
end of the spectrum, the more financially-lucrative, popular one, it's more
important to be good, isn't it?  I find myself completely in the middle on
this, I'm afraid, upon introspection - but in essence I prefer to not think
about it at all, and instead pursue the "not doing" of being transparent to
the music you're doing.  In this way one is more honest to oneself, at the
very least.  Even on a bad day, then, how can one criticize oneself

Or, as Frank Zappa put it for all of us, "Shut up and play your guitar!"

Stephen Goodman
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