I hear and visualize in my mind all music, guitar and or otherwise, just as if it were a physical object that I can see with my eyes. To me music is like a landscape we travel through as if one were on tour seeing three dimensional objects with all there characteristics and having the clear ability to navigate among them... knowing all the right moves necessary to avoid errors in making the wrong move, stumbling or bumping into something. When people ask me how they can hear the changes in the chords of a song... I explain how and show them the way to really be a part of the music... and to have no more difficulty doing this than walking around their home without misjudging where a doorway is, or driving a car without seeing and knowing how and when to turn, slow down, stop and go... or parallel park. It's no great mystery once the truth is know as described even by the Greek Mathematician and Philosopher "Pythagoras" who understood that music is a Three Dimensional Audio Form... just as the world around us is a solid and visible one. My experience hearing music on the guitar before I was born was just a training ground for this world of sound. I just had the uncluttered privilege of experiencing The Way Music Works a little earlier than some others. Yet... it can be learned by anyone with a pair of ears that function reasonably well.
I Am Guitar... I was born to the guitar... it is as if it was one of my parents. During the nine months preceding my entrance into this world, my mother played the guitar several hours each day. Less than one hour prior to her giving birth to me she had been playing guitar for several hours as she would do for hours on end. It is a matter of very clear understanding by many experts in numerous fields of medical science and other areas of study and there is no doubt I came into this life with a pre-disposition and awareness of the sound of music played on a guitar... and more than likely affected by this phenomena that the very essence of myself is intimately connected to that audio imagery... the unique sound of the guitar. So, it by this that I can definitively say "I Am Guitar"... or at least from the very beginning of my own existence... The Guitar Is With Me... Let Us Play.
All the aspects of the thing we call music are merely hearing and instinctively about making the right moves. The regular practices of reading and counting the values of music notes is of extreme value in the area of knowledge and education... but just like in daily activities when we walk, talk and interact with the environment and individuals we encounter... we don't have to calculate distances, measure or count steps we take... or pull out a small guidebook to have a normal conversation with another person, or spell the words we are speaking. We do these things just naturally. Of course it is helpful to be aware of the systematic elements of measurements of the physical world, and the rules of grammar establishing good speech and more... but we do not think or generally use these things in our millions of movements and such each day. We are instinctive by nature and act automatically to basically survive in daily life. All the structure of knowledge including that of music knowledge came thousands of years after human beings did anything they do as valuable ways of remembering and teaching others elements of better understanding and doing things, but we did things first and then created ways to retain and describe what it was we had done. No one wrote it down first and then said now I think I can do this or that. We have to regain confidence in our natural human instinctive behavior... a gift we have long forgotten we were given at birth as a right of life... along with it's counterpart creativity... the stolen human right.
This is not to say we should not use the valuable lexicons we have on performing all activities, but if we over establish the premise that everything must follow the directions as if they are dictated on a map of some sort we can become too focused on the map and drive off the road into a ditch. We do not follow little guidebooks, maps or GPS directions in 99% of daily activities. We have to be extremely on guard to avoid too much so called help... and use our inner "gut awareness"... these abilities are a gift from birth... Instinct. Playing and hearing the true aspects of music is no different, we must be aware first... and then use the guidance available for assistance and refining moves and increasing our ability to survive better, with more ease... and a better outcome.
The Music Is In You... Just Release It
The sounds are in you... they are not out there. For your entire lifetime, however long that is... you have been accumulating designs in sound, patterns of both melodies and harmonies... from the millions of songs and fragments of songs you have listened to. We as human beings hear and store music movements and all elements of sound as we listen to any and all the music we hear. We compare, analyze and categorize these designs in sound just as we do visual images, the tastes of foods and all sensory perceptions. Our mind is a computer... and we keep within our mind billions of experiences in all areas of our five senses as a computer stores information... the only big difference is that within our human mind... our bio-computer... they are kept in an analog form... not digital, and therefore are first hand... real representations instead of just digital code to be retrieved as from the hard drive of a computer. What does this all mean?
"GUITAR and MUSIC"
There's Much More Beyond What You Know Or Have Been Told
by Craig Smith
sample below on player
A Short Clip Of The Full "42" Minute Recording
About The Quest
The Quest is a single, forty two minute one track recording which I composed spontaneously on guitar... in real time. I like to write pieces in this way, that is... usually without a specific theme or idea in mind, I just turn on the recoding equipment and experience what came out after finishing. I have called this form "Spontaneous Composition", but it is by no means my unique creation... for it is what musicians have been doing since the dawn of making music, long before the development of written music. The unique part, if there is one at all, is that we can now capture the results on recording equipment. And in addition digital technology has not only made this easier, but it has made the results in sound recording better than ever. With these advancements it's possible to not only catch that moment in sound, but essentially have a finished, publishable production with little or no tweaking.
As for this piece, “The Quest”, it came about in just that way. I had about an hour of free time in between other scheduled activities... so I set up a track on the recorder, picked up my guitar... and started playing. I didn't think about the time, or anything outside the music and continued until I felt like I had said all I had to say musically. After I turned off the equipment, I just trimmed the beginning to get rid of unwanted environmental noises prior to playing the first note, and then faded out the ending with a mild slope. Fortunately, there were no critical errors, so it was done. All total, it was a take, and complete with the trimming etc., took under an hour... even with burning a CD to play in the car for a test. I wound up leaving it exactly as it was, as I usually do with other compositions done this way. The only thing perhaps that was unusual was the forty two minute length, even a surprise to myself since I had not really been watching the clock.
The title, "The Quest", came also almost immediately as I finished the finalizing of the process... sort of simultaneous with the burning of the test CD. When it came out of the CD burner, I wrote the name on with a Sharpie marker, and left it as such. Although I had no specific intent or idea of what this so called composition/performance was about, or how it was going to unfold....the “name” became of more interest as days went by, as I will explain below.
I began playing at about age five after my grandfather gave me my first guitar. I believe the cost of which at that time was about twelve dollars. Both my mother and grandfather played the instrument very minimally, and quite poorly... to say the least, strumming three chords and singing. Yet, I apparently noticed their playing and apparently it inspired me to develop an interest in guitar myself. However, there may have been another factor involved in why I was so enchanted with the sound of the guitar itself in the first place. And, that would be because all during the nine months prior to my birth, my mother was playing her guitar closely pressed against her stomach. I have often felt that perhaps I had heard the unique sound of a guitar then and been just waiting to discover what it was I had experienced in those first months of life before entering the real world. In any event, I found the guitar close at hand in the hands of both my mother and grandfather, and the rest is history.
Consequently, throughout the years, I have been playing guitar as a full time interest, and profession. And, on a "Quest", as you might say, to discover more about the guitar and playing it... and writing music on it that reflects my experiences as they come along. So, when I finished "The Quest", I titled it as such with little thought at first, only later to reflect on the total outcome as possibly symbolic of something deeper than just another piece of guitar music, perhaps part of a musical documentary of my life with guitar.
In any event, as mentioned above, I like to just sit down with guitar in hand... and improvise in free form, with no intentional outline or format and see what results. This was just one of those cases, but one that turned out a little bit longer in length than usual, and maybe with some hidden agenda, or maybe not. Who will ever know, but who cares... all that is, is what is... "The Quest".
The Quest on iTunes
Link Here... click on image below
Creativity... A Stolen Right Of Life
Click Above to Link
We all come into this life with an immediate abundance of ability to be the "Next Big Thing" in any area of life we should so desire to explore. We are born into the Natural World of Creativity... with all the connections in place, like those of the processors and programs of a brand new computer, just waiting to be presented with ideas and images from the outside that will take us on an inner journey of imagination to discover who we really are and were meant to become to the world. Then... it starts to happen... The Shut Down, like perhaps a computer virus that takes over from the outside of our true self... and slowly... bit by bit... piece by piece blocks, controls and destroys all the great things we could have uncovered and offered to the rest of the world.
It seems almost deliberate, as if those around us in our lives... from family, friends, teachers and later others in our working environment... everyone, everywhere has taken an oath based on perhaps the fear of change, a pledge to stop us from the uniqueness of ourselves. It's as if they want us to follow a specific road map... or guidance system that "keeps them safe from us". Why is this... What is it that they are really so in fear of... is the fear really based on their concern that we will be better off by complying, or that they will be less threatened. This is the question and a dilemma for ourselves as to how we can not be infected by this virus of insecurity when they are the carriers of it. It seems to be their sole purpose only is to take over our lives, destroy our potential of individuality... and protect themselves from the fear of any type of change. Just like the pathology of any infectious disease, or a computer virus... We Are Gradually Taken Over To Become "THEM", and serve only their wants and needs. How can we protect ourselves, how can we immunize our creative mind to this epidemic of fears that is focused on us so that to comply and do only what the program allows.
Have we forgotten... We Are The Creators... We Are Man! Creativity is in our nature and in our hands, and has been since the dawn of mankind. We are the only species of animal on the planet that continuously pours out new ideas every second of every day, and has been doing so for as long as any historic records have been kept... and even far beyond that into the deepest past of pre-history. Our very essence is Creativity and , we were put here, placed here... or whatever to continuously bring about Perpetual Change. If we have any purpose in life at all it is that, to create and move the world into the future with our ideas and what we make and bring into reality. Why are people so determined to slow things down to a halt, to cause things to stop... or to say in other way... To Imitate Death, that condition where there is no movement.
In my art... music, there has to be movement... music is like a living organism at it's best... ever changing, twisting stretching and exploring new worlds of sound. Music is non-static design, it is A Sound Sculpture in Sound, always In Motion. Music moves like all healthy living things... not trapped, inhibited, restricted or enslaved to any outside force... Not Dead. Music is A Pure, Living... Creative Flow of Energy, unfolding before our ears... as if they were eyes. This is what has made music a very special and important part of our lives... it is a pattern or blueprint of life itself. Like DNA music shapes our lives mysteriously in ways we cannot even begin to know. Music takes on a journey to our own soul, a place we seldom can visit without such a guide, a guide to a part of our self we cannot experience any other way.