More Dorian noodles

I can’t get over how pretty it is when you go into a major chord from the minor dominant 7th. It’s really quite pretty, although it benefits from being underlined a few times to get the ear used to hearing it as a resolution. Turns out I had stumbled onto that a while back when I misplayed part of the end of the intro to “Mormorio” (with the addition of a Bb that made no sense but sounded nice). So I’m fiddling around with that now.

What I’m not doing is physically connecting to any mental musical babble. If I’m not in touch with the mental babble away from the piano, I can’t turn it on like a light switch when I’m at the thing, either. I just get very compulsive about building something when I find that nice piece of sea glass. That may well be where my strength lies, but I think it would be worthwhile to see what happens when I shove at this other particular barrier for a bit as well. A month isn’t too long to ask, and is probably nowhere near long enough.

I just want to hear something in my head and know where I should be putting my hands to get that noise out. It’s hard — I can do it with a melody much more easily. Just hear something in my head and start aiming for it. But when the left hand comes in, I have to know what chord change I’ve done to aim for that. It’s not too bad in some places; when I seem to be dancing around a G and I land on an A in the melody that feels like a semicolon, I aim for the DM with the left hand, and that’s usually the chord change I’m hearing in my head that goes along with the A in my right hand. I can hear the chord changes in my head and usually (but not always) tell which one I’m in with a little picking around. Sometimes I’ve been wrong, and I64 has thrown me off in the past. But I have to pick around to verify them, and on top of it, I have to pick a general mood, is it octaves, is it triplets, what rhythm do I want, is this a rag or a waltz …

The left hand is hard when one is improvving. Improvving on a single-note instrument is a goddamned piece of cake! It’s the chord changes and the mood of the left hand that’s the tough part. That’s where all the scaffolding and structure is. Building only the surface of something is easy; building the underlying foundation and structure beneath it that holds it up and making sure it’s pretty there as well are really tough. The more I think about it, the less I get some first violinists and lead guitars who seem to think that music consists of them playing the melody and … some other junk. o_O Are they nuts? The melody is cake. It’s just the skin. It’s like thinking that doctoring consists of Dermatology and Miscellaneous.

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