how messing around can actually help

Today seemed like it was going to be a good day. The fog had rolled back and the sun came out. I was going to go run by the store to get some toothpaste when my mom appeared in her truck, which was making this really weird noise. Turns out, some jerk stole the catalytic converter from her car. While my mom was the on the phone with the insurance company, I wandered into the living room to mess with the piano. I started randomly playing some hymns I had heard sometime ago. It was startling because I had never played them before, only sung them. One of them, titled “Were You There?,” I remember playing on the guitar a few times but that was it. I played a little bit of an old Suzuki piece that I had learned when I used to take lessons, a bit of “A Study in Bleakness,” and then began to randomly play different notes.

I started with D (I always end up on that note somehow) and began to play a strange pattern of notes, throwing in a B flat every so often. With my left hand, I just played chords. In a few minutes, I had the makings of a piece. I didn’t get a chance to write down what I came up with but it did get thinking about process and how I hadn’t really made much progress on my pieces because everything seemed forced. I was trying too hard. Just spontaneously playing to occupy a few minutes of time allowed my creativity to flow and take me somewhere I didn’t expect to go. I’m not sure if I’ll get a chance to write down what I came up with tomorrow because I’m going to be kinda busy but maybe that isn’t the point. Being able to be spontaneous and just go with what seems to work is important. I just have to remind myself of that and just let things go. If I have a crappy session, it’s not the end of the world.


About lostincompositionland

absentminded composer/writer with short-ass attention span. Prone to fits of silliness at the drop of a hat. :P
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