"Improvisation is like a conversation: you say what you know, but you don't know what you're going to say." --Marcus Roberts
A friend of mine once had a short conversation with Marcus Roberts a number of years ago about improvisation and this was the money quote. Even his remarks swing. Amazing.
I've shared this quotation with many people and thought a lot about how it pertains to writing and improvising music. It's easy to focus on the brilliance of his idea, an idea that seems obviously true as soon as you hear it.
But what if you don't know anything?
That's the reason to practice and listen and check out other musicians and go to jam sessions and buy books and talk about music. So we can learn something. So we can be inspired and create something new. So we have something to say when the time comes.
I'm starting this blog so that when you go to those jam sessions, or have a gig or sit down to write a song, you don't repeat yourself. You'll have something new to say, and the best part is, even you don't know how it's going to come out.
That's the fun of creating.