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RE: Improvisation Ears, Styles, and chops was RE: Loop Jams vs. Jazz Jams

   The way I prefer to look at it ,being a able to play scales and 
fast,doesn't add up to having chops,that sort of skill tends to lead to so 
called improv that is merely playing fast permutations of learned patterns 
over a given rhythmic,chordal framework.Which can of course be really fun 
do. But if carpenters showed off their skills the way some musicians do 
the nails would show and there'd be afuckofalotof 'em
   The improv skills  that I seldom hear discussed are Composition 
skills,which include well develpoed sense of beginning/middle/end,the 
ability to tell what is essential and what is embellishment , Daring, 
problem solving( follows right on the heels of daring)  effective use of 
Space.The ability to work effectively with line,harmony,color,texture, 
blend/contrast motion,repetition/variation 
foreground/background,tension/resolution ,motivic development,dynamics, 
timing,counterpoint,gesture etc. as creative tools. Most of these 
compositional elements can be employed working with raw sound as well as 
tuned instruments.  An interesting approach to group improv can be to 
in advance on a story,and then try to tell it .

It seems to me that improvisers who pay attention to each other should be 
able to play together regardless of differences in instruments, styles, 
techniques and musical knowledge, by bringing big ears to the session and 
responding at some level to the essence of what each other is doing.