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Does anyone know what piano player,,, #3003116 08/13/19 10:38 PM
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TommyS Offline OP
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Anyone know what pianist said “ improvisation is composition that hasn’t been written down yet” ?? Thx,,

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Re: Does anyone know what piano player,,, [Re: TommyS] #3003132 08/14/19 12:03 AM
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Old No7 Offline
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Sorry; no idea, even after a Google search..........

But I did find these music/jazz quotes that I liked, see below.

Old No7

Count Basie -- "The real innovators did their innovating just by being themselves."

John Coltrane -- "I start in the middle of a sentence and move both directions at once."
... and -- "I never even thought about whether or not they understand what I'm doing... The emotional reaction is all that matters as long as there's some feeling of communication, it isn't necessary that it be understood."

Miles Davis -- "I'll play it first and tell you what it is later."
...and -- "Sometime you have to play a long time to be able to play like yourself."
...and -- "You should never be comfortable, man. Being comfortable fouled up a lot of musicians."

Duke Ellington -- "There are two kinds of music. Good music, and the other kind."

George Gershwin -- "Life is a lot like jazz. It's best when you improvise."

Dizzy Gillespie -- "It's taken me all my life to learn what not to play."

Herbie Hancock -- "One thing I like about jazz is that it emphasized doing things differently from what other people were doing."

Bobby Hutcherson -- "The whole thing of being in music is not to control it but to be swept away by it. If you're swept away by it you can't wait to do it again and the same magical moments always come."

Keith Jarrett -- "Jazz is there and gone. It happens. You have to be present for it. That simple."

Pat Metheny -- "Listening is the key to everything great in music."

Thelonious Monk -- "Jazz is freedom. You think about that."
...and -- "A note can be as small as a pin or as big as the world, it depends on your imagination."

Charlie Parker -- "Master your instrument, master the music, and then forget all that bullshit and just play."

Sonny Rollins -- "Improvisation is the ability to create something very spiritual, something of one's own."

Art Tatum -- "You have to practice improvisation, let no one kid you about it!"

Re: Does anyone know what piano player,,, [Re: TommyS] #3003155 08/14/19 09:25 AM
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I think Strawinsky once said something like that. "Composition is frozen improvisation", perhaps?!

Re: Does anyone know what piano player,,, [Re: TommyS] #3003205 08/14/19 04:37 PM
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I've heard a number of Jazz cats refer to composing as slow speed improvisation. The process is the same just spontaneous decision making versus having time to contemplate a decision.

Re: Does anyone know what piano player,,, [Re: TommyS] #3003213 08/14/19 05:15 PM
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Interesting comments.

I think another way to look at is this...

* Composition is writing and playing a song -- to be then played the same way each time

* Improvisation is playing a song (or a chord sequence) -- but to be played differently each time


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Re: Does anyone know what piano player,,, [Re: Old No7] #3003251 08/14/19 07:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Old No7
Interesting comments.

I think another way to look at is this...

* Composition is writing and playing a song -- to be then played the same way each time

* Improvisation is playing a song (or a chord sequence) -- but to be played differently each time


Old No7



I'd say improv is like writing an new tune every time you play I guess could be called contrafact. There both about coming up with new melodies.

Re: Does anyone know what piano player,,, [Re: TommyS] #3003270 08/14/19 09:32 PM
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Thanks.... lots of interesting replies...

Re: Does anyone know what piano player,,, [Re: TommyS] #3003282 08/14/19 11:01 PM
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This just in ,,it was Dave Brubeck at a concert in Tyler,Texas

Re: Does anyone know what piano player,,, [Re: TommyS] #3003326 08/15/19 08:06 AM
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I said that smile


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Re: Does anyone know what piano player,,, [Re: TommyS] #3003331 08/15/19 11:22 AM
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Keith Jarrett in an interview once said that his improvisations were "spontaneous composition" - a play on "spontaneous combustion".

One of my favorite observations about improvising and composing was from Stravinsky in "Poetics of Music" (taken from lectures at Harvard University circa 1940). He said that a composer improvises aimlessly the way an animal grubs (digs in the dirt) about. He said they (the animal and the composer) were yielding to a compulsion to seek things out.


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