Thursday, April 07, 2016

Very occasional quote of the day: Max Roach - how you build a solo

Max Roach by Jean-Michel Basquiat
“What makes a piece an art piece is design. Design.

If you play any instrument, if you don’t create design…. If the artist doesn’t know how to utilize space and sound, and the dynamics of soft and loud — all the little things — and repitition and sequential dealing with all the rules that make up what we know as an art piece — and then some more –then it’s not [an art] piece anyway. Whether you’re playing an instrument of determinate or indeterminate pitch.

I hear some people who run up-and-down the piano and it’s not musical. All I can say is, “Well, he’s got good technique.” But I never say he’s playing music, or [that] he’s creating some design.

So when I build a solo it’s design within the structure of something, sometime. Basically it’s design. Like creating a poem, a painting, or anything else. It’s how you use [design] to set up certain things.

Space is important and dynamics are important. And things like sequences or sequential things are important. And how you relate to certain timbres on the [drum]set itself is important.

And that’s how you build a solo.”

- Max Roach, interview by Scott K. Fish

There's more— hit the link, go read the whole thing. Be visiting Fish's blog all the time— it's full of great stuff.


Scott K Fish said...

Thank you, Todd. You ain't so bad yourself!

Scott K Fish

Unknown said...

Great quote, and I love that Basquiat!

Anonymous said...

Interesting, great stuff!