motivation inspiration discipline

 
       
 
Mar 01, 2018, 04:19 PM

A couple of quotes i ran across recently that i thought i’d share:
“Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.”
Ira Glass

Ah, good taste! What a dreadful thing! Taste is the enemy of creativeness.
Pablo Picasso

 
     
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Brad Jaggard Joined Jun 22, 2016
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Mar 01, 2018, 08:14 PM

A couple good ones.

You, as a Songwriter, are the first listener. Your ‘taste’ is what enabled that Introductory Movement to ‘hook’ you. What was it? The Rhythm? The Tempo? The percussive effect of the instrument?

You may have played that Movement at length, getting that ‘Hook Factor’ into your head, feeling it with a bodily response, rocking your body, bobbing your head, tapping your foot. You’re hooked and your ‘taste’ tells you other people probably will be too.

Your taste kicks in to determine the strategic factor of ‘not enough’, ‘enough’, and ‘too much’.

How many bars of Introductory Movement are ‘enough’ to serve that function of ‘introducing’ the Song? The Verse ‘can’ work right from the start, as the opening sounds the listener hears. The Introductory Movement can go on 10 to 14 seconds and then start the Verse. Or, if it’s something special, it might go on longer, 30 seconds, 1 minute. You decide. Your ‘taste’ decides. Unless there’s something truly special in an Intro you should probably determine ‘enough’ is about 10 to 14 seconds. Then it is ‘time’ to break into the Verse. (A Verse can be instrumental or vocal, in my opinion. Even without a vocal there is a structure to be found.)

That same sense of ‘enough’ is something you should learn to apply throughout the Song. I’m suggesting an application of your ‘taste’ to make that judgment. How many lines, how much ‘Lyrical setup’ is ‘enough’ Verse before it is ‘time’ to get to the Chorus and THE Hook, the main Lyrical idea of the storyline? As the first listener, you decide; your ‘taste’. A ‘rule’ is; “Don’t bore us! Get to the Chorus.” Your ‘taste’ dictates whether YOU are bored and desire something different to happen at some point.

You risk losing listeners if you miss the ‘too much’ judgment. ‘Not enough’ can probably pass. You jumped in and they went with you. ‘Enough’ is the elusive one, but, as you create more works your sense of ‘not enough, enough and too much’ can develop. Your ‘taste’ can develop.

These are elements of that creativity Picasso speaks of.

From there, a Verse, or two, and getting to the Chorus within about a minute can probably appeal to other listeners. You, the first listener, exercise your judgment, your taste, and you decide how much of each component is ‘enough’.

After the Chorus it is your judgment to ‘craft’ the structure. Repetition supplies structure. Listeners can relate to repetition. They ‘learned’ the Melody and cadence in the first Verse. Now, depending on your judgment, you craft another Verse employing that same Melody and cadence, those same vocal dynamics and arrangement of instruments. That leads you back to a repeat of the Chorus. The listener, you and others, should recognize that structure and find it pleasing to the ear, pleasing to your/their ‘taste’. We like ‘getting it’, comprehending the structure, comprehending the Lyric, hearing the Melody we ‘learned’ the first time, in the Verse, repeat, and the Chorus repeat.

So don’t totally disregard YOUR taste, or that of others. The final judgment is yours, and is, of necessity, based on YOUR taste. You develop your taste by listening, hearing other peoples’ work, studying it, dissecting it to some degree, figuring out why it hooked YOU, a listener, the first listener, how it did it, how long it took, or, conversely, where it lost you, you became un-hooked and drifted off to other thoughts. Sometimes I realize I have not been listening. The Song ends and I haven’t heard it.

Create as much as you feel, however often, in whatever mode, poetry, short story, Lyric, Melody. Like all other activities the more you do it the more likely you are to develop ‘taste’, judgment, a sense of not enough, enough, too much.

Street Artist, Banksy, is quoted: “The trick is to rest; not quit.”

Create. You decide.

[ Edited: 09 March 2018 10:20 PM by Gary E. Andrews]

There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? http://www.garyeandrews.com

 
     
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Gary E. Andrews Joined Apr 12, 2005
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Mar 01, 2018, 09:02 PM

Interesting quotes, Brad. In the case of Ira Glass there is one piece of advice I’d give back to him. If you are going to make your living on radio, do your listeners the courtesy of speaking clearly. He drives me crazy, because “This American Life” is a great show but would be so much better if he didn’t swallow half of each sentence, leaving us to figure out the meaning from the unswallowed portion.

Just a pet peeve of mine :)

 
     
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Gavin Sinclair Joined Dec 02, 2014
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Mar 02, 2018, 01:36 PM

We don’t get into creative work ‘because we have good taste’. We ‘get into it’ because we’re creative. No one has a clue of what ‘good taste’ is the first time they come up with a riff or draw a tree or sing a chorus or solve some problem with a creative idea. We just do it because we’re creative. Taste comes, can only come, with time. Same as skill and discipline, technique.

 
     
Larry Gude Joined May 23, 2017
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Mar 02, 2018, 04:28 PM

So the message i got from these two quotes is this: write. Just write. Dont worry about being critical (tastes) until later on in the process as that can only hinder the creative flow. And for beginners, yeah, you probably arent gonna write award winning hit songs your first go around. Whats that saying? For every ten songs you write only one of them is going to be “good” . something like that. If you sit around waiting for inspiration to strike , you probably arent going to get much done. The only way is to actually put in the work. Not by procrastinating or letting yourself get distracted by thinking about writing. ” just do it” and dont worry about measuring up to your high tastes. If you put in the work you will eventually get there.

That, in a nutshell, was my take away.

 
     
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Brad Jaggard Joined Jun 22, 2016
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Mar 02, 2018, 05:00 PM

But, I’m good at writing gibberish….... In fact, I’m great at it!!! :)

 
     
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JAPOV Joined Jul 02, 2006
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Mar 02, 2018, 06:34 PM
JAPOV - 02 March 2018 05:00 PM

But, I’m good at writing gibberish….... In fact, I’m great at it!!! :)

GooGoo GaJoob! :P

 
     
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Brad Jaggard Joined Jun 22, 2016
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Mar 14, 2018, 08:34 AM

For today’s inspiration, I did a little 3 chord, early morning, gentle thing and she….sang a recipe she was looking at on FB to it.

“You can add more vinegar to taste….”

Freaking priceless. It was amazing. I wish I could share it, but I want to live to see the next sunrise.  LOL

 
     
Larry Gude Joined May 23, 2017
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