Thinking too much in terms of chords

Playing a chordal instrument, it’s no surprise that I do think of music this way. And let’s face it, all music is chordal in the end. Even the little practice pieces I played/play on viola are in certain chords. I very clearly recall even just playing them through the first time and thinking to myself, “Okay, that’s an E7 and I’m in C so yep, we’re headed to Am now … back to C … ” So even single-note instruments imply chords even if they can’t play them, or rely on the ear of the listener to imply chords that make sense in the musical vernacular often common to both.

But I think that, at some point, I’m going to have to be content to stay in a chord for a little longer and not to just modulate around on the beat all the time. I guess most music does that, but I don’t want to wear a rut in it. There’s a few things I want to get used to doing at some point:

1) Not modulating like clockwork.
2) Not finishing up a V with its I right then and there, or putting the I in the next phrase. (Not lining up all the cracks in the sidewalk, in other words.)
3) Writing something — anything — in freygish.
4) Using a f*cking 16th note at some point.

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