Take a Classical Vacation

Effective composition, like every other art form-lets use a female writer (to avoid the he/she shit) as our example-relies most heavily on the composer’s keen awareness of her surroundings.

A person attempting to write a novel is not best served by studying writing methods and a composer is not best served by studying composition methods.  I put “best served” in bold for a reason and that is so I am hopefully not confused with throwing out knowledge pertaining to your art.  I.e., a naturally gifted writer will write a better novel if free to probe the texture of society than the writer who is in a state of continual learning, unable to observe the commonplace of life.

Imagine placing a pedestal on the busiest sidewalk in the world.  Now imagine that author standing atop the pedestal with her eyes wide open and information streamed to her through every possible source.  That is the job of an author.  That is the job of a composer.

So I have found that within the complex nature of art, sometimes it is best to free yourself of the outliers of your art world.  Stop listening to “your influences” for a period of time.  Listen to what you would consider to be your hypothetical influences of other arts you rarely visit, be that rock, jazz, country, whatever.  Once you gain a solid grasp of the reflections of your taste, you will come back to composition with keener awareness of your artistic process.

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