so i think it was monk who said something like you have to give 100 percent at every performance.  i think that is rare these days when i see performances.  but last night i was channel surfing on the tv.
i saw a beautiful woman in a white evening gown on a stage by herself
singing presumedly along with a recording.  there was a large audience.  somehow i knew i had caught the begining of the tune becuase it was just two simple piano chords sounding like the begining to a song.  then the music picked up and the woman got more and more into it.  soon she was singing leaning forward she was getting so into it.  she was kicking ass so much she practically flying out of her gown from the neck... she was on her toes and looked so much like she was going to fly right out of that dress.  she was giving it so much more than 100 percent... it was the best live performance i have seen in so long!  it was the best music i have heard in so long regardless of genre.  
it was martina mcbride singing at the cmt country music awards.
    i have never been a country music fan, but now i'll tell you i do not care if alls i listen to is that woman for the rest of my life.
   the moral of this story..
it makes no difference what you are playing ... you just gotta be
giving it 100 percent and be zapped 110 percent locked into the groove like she was  so much so that you can just barely stay on this planet.
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yeah - i got to see mark o'connor with his appalachian string trio sunday night - very inspiring - talk about exceeding 100%

i get the same kick out of a great comedian or an actor too.  i love it when a performer takes me off the planet  (sometimes i'm lucky enough to take myself off of it:)
one of the disadvantages of musical forms like jazz and classical is that they have such a complex list of things that you need to know to "get it right" that you can easily fool yourself into thinking you are making good music when you are really just fooling yourself with your list of correct procedures.  

other simpler styles are much more dependant on the gut instinct of 'does it sound good' or 'does it inspire you'.  the trick is to use the tools of jazz and classical music to construct something that inspires you, but you always have to have that intense emotional reaction as your goal.
ya thats a good point.  but it is often the mistake that many jazz players make putting too much emphasis on a mega repetoire, rather than knowing each tune as well as they know the blues.  it is an easy trap because when we start to gig as a pro there is so much pressure to have the big repetoire and this necceseraliy makes us start to learn music the wrong way.  we stop putting our all into every tune... we can not.. we have to get on to the next tune.
    anyway... i have identified now the tune i heard martina mcbride sing...  it was "anyway"   wow...  now i have downloaded a whole bunch of her tunes... i am her new biggest fan... i have never been like this before about anyone... its kind of weird... i feel like this is how beatles fans must have felt of something... i can barely sleep,  i just want to keep listening to this gurl.  i mean this is just not me..  i mean i am your basic coltrane/davis/monk guy and i talk about george russel and the lydian chromatic theory.
what has happened to me?
i thought the name of the song was "build it anyway".

surprisingly, it's basically a three chord song.

in fact, there are only a total of five simple chords:

f, fsus4, bb, c7 & dm

which proves once again that music doesn't have to be complex to pull your heart strings (although the arrangement does get pretty grandiose in the middle).

martina mcbride has been a big star for a long time now. i first heard her about ten years ago.

mike, when i talked to her the other day, she said you should stop sending her those roses and sleeping in the curb next to the mailbox. it's creeping her out. just remember, if she gets that restraining order against you, you'll have to give up your gun collection. j/k
i was a huge fan of country music for a long time.  some of the stuff that the country artists are spraying about nowadays leaves me a little cold, but some of the older starts like mm really breath life into their songs and tell great stories - much like the great jazz artists

i used to hang out in nashville a bit.  there are hundreds if not thousands of great players, song writers and singers there.  it really is a "music city" (at least a few years ago when i was hanging out)
love country music.  pig robbins, al stricklin -- these guys are just great players and improvisors, no matter how you feel about the music itself.

i wouldn't call it a simple music -- even though the chords typically are really simple (you don't really need to write charts, often -- it's often easy enough just to ear your way through the form, even on a tune you've never played before).  quite a few subtleties to the music, and of course you need a really good set of ears to come up with a part that fits the tune, as with other pop music.
very inspirational.  like the great ones she strikes a chord with those who appreciate good vocal music.
she's bleedin gorgeous too!
lately i've been playing very simple calyso and regae stuff. i feel like my solos are laking because i can't use all my fancy jazz scales and altered chords. it kind kind of hard for me to come up with interesting solos when i have to stick to the basics.
good solos are for the most part are  not about what scales or notes are being played they are about the timing of the notes ie, whether you are in the zone... whether there is a flow.  might i suggest you are looking for the answer in the wrong places if you are finding your solos not interesting.  these days i find myself telling my students in there very first beginner piano lesson and it never changes to the most advanced students i teach.  the answer is in the time not in the pitch... almost always.  in lesson number one i tell my new student... i will be teaching you about something that can be for the most part can be broken down into two distinct categories...
1.)pitch  2.)rhythm   rhthm is the harder of the two to learn.  some people are born with natural talent when it comes to pitch... there is a thing called perfect pitch that some people are reportedly born with.  no is born with the equivalent in rhythm.  the most advanced rhytmic musicians in the world all worked to be that way none were born with an inate advantage over all others like perfect pitch in the ear.  so when you learn a musical piece and something does not sound right i will bet you now without even knowing what the piece will be or when you will learn it  a hundred dollars the problem is a rhythmic one not because of a wrong note... i offer this bet to all my new students now in their very first lesson to make the point.
but it is also true with improvisation and adavced students.  if your solos do not sound good... sure you may benefit by some work on basic music theory... chord scale knowledge.etc...etc... but for the part  your problem is rhythm  you have not learned to improvise with a flow and in the zone until you do it does not matter how much you know about pitch you will never sound good.
that's for the advice. your right, my note choices are not bad but the rhymic flow sucks.
excellent dr. mike
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