Nothing New (Under the Sun)

Nothing New (Under the Sun)

There are so many inspirational tidbits in this excellent blog post that I hardly know where to start. Although it does not contain any especially new information (and indeed that is the main premise of the essay), it is creatively and humorously presented in a way that makes visual learners like me happy. In fact, I wish I had found something like this while I was in graduate school, knocking myself out to reinvent the wheel at every turn. At this point in time I, for one, am particularly excited to know that now as an artist I not only don’t have to be cool (thank you, Dan Visconti!), but I can also—according to point #9 of the post linked above—be boring! The pressure is completely off! Whew.

The idea that everything is ultimately a mashup of other things got me thinking about a question that has been making the rounds, regarding whether one’s work emanates from “inside,” or whether it tends to “reflect” the outside world. While I would normally be very quick to say “oh, definitely inside” for myself, I am reminded that it is nearly impossible to make anything that isn’t affected by the filters of our personal experience, that somehow reflects our, as the author puts it, “genealogy of ideas.” So perhaps I’ll revise that answer to say that I take ideas sparked from assorted experiences and let them stew in a covered pot until they are processed into a musical soup blended from both external and internal environments. It’s a good excuse to buy one of these!

NewMusicBox provides a space for those engaged with new music to communicate their experiences and ideas in their own words. Articles and commentary posted here reflect the viewpoints of their individual authors; their appearance on NewMusicBox does not imply endorsement by New Music USA.

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