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Re: improvisation and performance

Stefan (in his fascinating post on improvisation and 'wrong' notes) said:

"For instance I was struck by some bizarre momentary impulse while 
performing at BEMF with Rick
Walker to use a Bob Marley loop. (My sister's husband is a huge fan and 
at the show.) It
completely stuck out and sounded just awkward and weird to me. In the past 
would have just
yanked it out and hoped that people forgot about it. Now instead I kept it 
there and did everything I
could to make it work. Rick started singing along and it was a great 

Interesting that you mentioned that, Stefan.       You completely threw me 
when you added that Marley loop,
but I've found in improvisation that it is efficacious to use things that 
throw you...........whether it be
completely unexpected turns that an improviser may make (like the Marley 
loop) or your
gear suddenly throwing weird unexpected things at you (which seems to 
to me an inordinant amount
of time).

I've finally subscribed wholeheartedly to the 'when life gives you lemons, 
make lemonade' philosophy.

In that particular case,  I felt terribly awkward for just a few seconds 
when that Marley loop came on
and then I decided,   what would Bob sound like if he had been an 
experimental musician singing the
same song..............I then totally got into going with it vocally, and 
sang "Stir It Up"  like a maniac would
(if a maniac was into Diamanda Galas or Meredith Monk.............lol).

I actually had several people come up to me later and tell me that was a 
highlight of our set.
It was shocking to hear it (I liked the melodic use of the blender I had 
just purchased at the thrift store across the
street part myself.....................lol) but it was also very cool to 
hear that it had really connected with some of the
audience..................especially as I didn't feel in control of the 
experience at all.   Sometimes, though,  those are some
of the coolest moments in musical improv:   when you aren't in control and 
you are just trying to be sensitive to
the vibe of 'what is'.

Unusual lemonade, but lemonade, nonetheless.   Thanks, Stefan for feeding 
that offbeat piece of music in our set.

gratefully yours,   Rick