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Alan Watts and Ali Akhbar Khan / the importance of each note

edited September 22 in Off-topic

At 18:00 Watts relates what his friend told him about the most important thing in playing music. Not surprisingly, it’s what my teacher taught me.

Comments

  • I love Watts, thank you for sharing

  • Can’t fault your philosophy <3

  • edited September 21

    that art, and work, should be pleasure, is something quite important.

    Recently I was involved in a dance project, but the main artist is so intellectual when dancing, and even more in the planning phase and choreography, it simply had become a chore to work with her. Even though she is brilliant in her art. Soon later I quit because I was unable (not allowed) to convince her that art without joy misses the point entirely. And won’t make her really successfull. Which is true - her films are mediocre. A talent wasted.

  • @Phil999 said:
    that art, and work, should be pleasure, is something quite important.

    From the point of view of the creator or the consumer?

  • edited September 22

    Edited

  • edited September 22

    @JanKun said:

    @markk said:

    @Phil999 said:
    that art, and work, should be pleasure, is something quite important.

    From the point of view of the creator or the consumer?

    Unless I misunderstood the goal of the video (which is brilliant, btw, @LinearLineman, thank you for sharing), I think Alan Watts is talking from the point of view of any individual performing an action, advising to stay focused on the present.

    I might misunderstand your words, but it seems that you're speakingfrom the point of view of a consumer, and therefore put art and entertainment in the same category when you say: "art without joy is totally missing the point". Art can bring joy but it is only one of its many purposes. For exemple, a movie by Jean-Luc Godard who sadly passed away recently, is not always easy and can be demanding on the viewer, but is always rewarding if you watch it trying to understand the point of view of the creator. This should extend to any form of art. The artist expects the audience to "elevate" to his level not the other way around. Some conceptual artists can sound pretentious or condescending sometimes. But it just because they expect the audience to adapt to their work. When an artist needs to adapt his creation to match the consumer's need, it is not art anymore, it becomes entertainment. Joy can be found in an austere piece of work or even in the saddest one.

    The dancer you're mentioning about seems to be following Alan Watts words. She creates according to her own terms, does it with passion and is most probably enjoying herself doing it. You're totally free to dismiss her work by calling it mediocre even if it sounds a bit harsh and resentful. But there is no wasted talent as long as the artist follows his/her instinct without compromising.

  • edited September 22

    well yes, I agree. The Mozart requiem is not composed for joy, neither for the performers nor for the audience. I have projected my personal view of how I want to work into the discussion.

  • @Phil999 said:
    well yes, I agree. The Mozart requiem is not composed for joy, neither for the performers nor for the audience. I have projected my personal view of how I want to work into the discussion.

    I don’t get that about the Requiem. I’ve listened to it countless times and had the benefit of great pleasure every time. Joy is not an equivalent at all to happy. Joy can be profound and ecstatic.

    I also don’t think the performers are having a bad time because it’s funeral music… unless they’re having a bad day. Bottom line, it’s a thing of beauty.

    I posted this primarily because of Ali Akbar Khan saying what the importance of being present for each note as it happens means. Musicians need to know that and think about it, IMO.

  • edited September 22

    well I also agree to that. Mozart’s requiem wasn’t a good example (it is indeed very beautiful, it’s one of my favourite melodies in my childhood).

    Obviously I’m cought in this current matter of mine with this dancer. Yesterday her camera man finished the editing of her latest video, and today she is exhausted and super depressed. When I finish a piece of art I’m the exact contrary. Full of joy and energy.

    No doubt, people work and feel not always the same. But being present in the moment of creativity is certainly a quality in art that applies to every artist, be it joyful or not so joyful.

    Thank you gentlemen for your insights.

  • Alan Watts has got to be the greatest rapper of all time.

  • @Phil999 said:
    well I also agree to that. Mozart’s requiem wasn’t a good example (it is indeed very beautiful, it’s one of my favourite melodies in my childhood).

    Obviously I’m cought in this current matter of mine with this dancer. Yesterday her camera man finished the editing of her latest video, and today she is exhausted and super depressed. When I finish a piece of art I’m the exact contrary. Full of joy and energy.

    No doubt, people work and feel not always the same. But being present in the moment of creativity is certainly a quality in art that applies to every artist, be it joyful or not so joyful.

    Thank you gentlemen for your insights.

    Yeah. Being present is being present in whatever state one is in. I’d go so far as to say that when being fully present/engaged one is kind of in a state outside of emotion.

    To LL’s earlier point, I agree being fully present for every note is critical…it might be the key element that distinguishes the “great” from the “good”.

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