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Extraordinary Musical Experiences

posted on #1
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Does anyone have any extraordinary musical experiences to share?

It can be something spiritual (or not), a breakthrough, a struggle you overcame, something unexpected... Perhaps, something that expanded your perception in some way!

I'll share one: After 8 years I listened back on one of the first songs I had written and had a totally different understand of its meaning. When I wrote it, my intentions were unclear, it was just an emotion I was portraying but had little direct experience with. Later on, I was able to unlock specific memories that had inspired the song, almost as if I wrote it in code only a future me would decipher.

This is just one example and I am asking a pretty broad question!!! If you feel so inclined to share, have at it :)

With love, moonchild <3

Edited by moonchild on September 14 2017 10:00
Love and blessings to you on your path!
posted on #2
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One thing i have encountered a few times is that i have fragments of songs lying around without really knowing what to do with them. And they can be dormant for years, literally. But on a few occasions now and then these fragments seem to combine to a whole new. Its not that i did not work on them or tried to fit them with other fragments but they just did not seem to fit. Then like in a epiphany they just come together, often in a very unexpected way. Often this seems to happen when i have been working intensely on them without any results and then decide to do something else. Just like if that intense work starts a process that continues on its own and eventually finds a solution when the conscious mind no longer interferes.
Pure fingerstyle
posted on #3
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I see exactly what you're talking about Moonchild, it can take a certain time to understand yourself, I feel it too like a message to myself for the moment I will be able to face it.

Much cheaper and more fun than seeing a psychologist, uh ?
The more you learn, the less you know !
posted on #4
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I don't know about specific moments but I can tell you the piece of advice that transformed my ability to sight-read music.

For years, I'd struggled to read music quickly enough to be able to sight read efficiently - I was always reading the next note in front of the one I was playing! It was because of a single statement made by one of my instructors my ability to read music was transformed. My instructor said:

"When you read a book, do you read every letter of every word or do you just know what the words look like? The same is for music, you learn what the 'words' (groups of notes) look like, not what each note is."

Within a couple of weeks of that (and a fair bit of practise!), I was sight reading a bar or two ahead of where I was playing...
Edited by mpointon on September 18 2017 16:46
posted on #5
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A bit different story, but the first thing crossing my mind when reading this thread was a long ago experience I shared with someone at a quite wild party:
The two of us were playing some Djembe percussions thing, and we took turns, one playing a straight groove and the other improvising freely on top of that.
Now, at some point we both went into improvisation mode at the same time, playing only weird off-set accents to the initial groove, and I'll never forget the surprise moment of realising we were both playing the exactly same, while totally free accents - it was odd to do for some three hits, then came a fourth and that still was a match and I felt "wow this is not real now", and I remember us keeping that up for even a few more hits...
that really was something I could by no means explain with coincidence, nor was our playing in any way foreseeable... we obviously rode the same groove that moment, and to me that's a gem to have experienced.

@martin: I can relate to your story very much, sometimes its these rather simple advice bits that make the difference :)
"Sorry - had to do it!" - Les Claypool

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posted on #6
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Oops, seems I posted in the wrong thread...

So true, Dick!
It is a big difference between just baking a cake for the beloved ones on one hand and working in the cake industry on the other hand. And in this coherence it doesn't matter at all, which ingrediences will be used:
The cake for the beloved ones will always taste .
Edited by will_C on September 28 2017 05:36
Life is.
posted on #7
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I’d say that a visit to Chapel Studios in Louth, England was an extraordinary experience for me, once in 2007 and then in 2009 for about 7 days. These 7 days have had a lasting impact ever since, as I had the opportunity to record a mini album with one of the UKs leading audio engineers. The amount of things I learned in that short space of time was priceless, and things that perhaps you’d easily overlook. For example when recording drums take anything out of the room that you aren’t using, such as any toms, stands, cymbals, etc etc which resonate of course and may bleed on to other mics – not always obvious! The use of a third mic on the snare pointing horizontally towards the side of the snare to capture tonal characteristics, especially when using metal snare drums was an interesting idea and something I’d never seen before. I learned some good tips on how to be more creative also, such as down tuning drum heads in a certain way and using tea towels to get special effects, which isn’t a new concept (used by the beatles), and I often use various tunings for jazz, pop and other genres, but this was the first time I’d seen this particular combination of a few ideas used in a studio environment. One of the best things I saw was on a particular track when we used masking tape over one of the acoustic guitars and then plugged it into a tiny practice amp the size of a brick and overloaded it so it distorted dreadfully but the effect was amazing.
I remember also when the vocalist was doing a take, the recording was stopped within about 30 seconds, and the engineer said “STOP – this is totally the wrong mic for your voice mate”. I was kind of blown away by that, as you suddenly realise the professionalism and quality of people you are working with and it makes you take a look at your own self, and ask many questions.
I came away from the experience a bit more confident, and inspired, but also feeling like I had to start all over again. It made me more professional, open minded and strangely enough on returning to live performances after that I felt different, and my band friends had noticed a slight improvement in general.
All in all it just showed me to try absolutely anything to get some new sounds, try something different, and not to be afraid to take a chance or two, it may not always work, but when it does its well worth it!!
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