08 March 2020

melodic lines and drawing

Evening Prayer Brunswick Heads, 2 March, 2020, oil on canvas board, 30 X 25 cm

I was at the piano this morning and working on GREEN DOLPHIN STREET from the Fake Book which houses many of the popular Standards in Jazz. So many of them come from the show tunes from Tin Pan alley in New York in the early 20th century. About 6 months ago, I decided to completely focus on these standards by learning how keys interlace with one another to create harmony.

So, I am make progress because I have learned to LOVE the WORK and love the process. Always, before, I had somehow magically wished to just simply play them, badly as it were, because I had not consecrated the time to really do the work involved. Over and over again, I have been repeating measures over and over in various inversions, and gradually they sink in. Anyway, I have learned a lot about both harmony, and also, about my chaotic mind. It is in fact like drawing something, over, and over again until drudgery reaches dedication.  

But my point in all this is really about the MELODY, and just how important it is to have  a great melodic line. Without it, one swims in a sea of feeling which can be nice, but it rarely possesses enough to reach the TRANSCENDENT. And this, is the goal of any search for greatness in the Arts. 

I began to see that a melodic line is to a composer what the drawing is to a painting. Without a drawing, a painting is a swirl of in-inclusiveness.  

More to be revealed... 



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