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In this episode, you will learn all about finding creativity in your music – lets have some fun!
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Playing beautiful twists and turns on our flutes is really fun, and knowing that someone made this up is sometimes pretty mind-boggling.
Well, we don’t really need to know how to write our own music necessarily, but discovering and finding creativity in your music is yet another way to find even more excitement in playing the flute. Let me show you!
Ah.. welcome welcome. It’s really great to have you here today. My name is Rebecca Fuller, and I’m the host and expert at Learn Flute Online, where we are playing the flute, and having fun!
There’s so much more to this art than just getting through a few fingerings and following what’s on the page.
So today, I want you to sit back and relax into the subject.. Well, if you’re driving, stay up and alert, but really I want you to kind of allow this subject to sink in deep because it’s something that you will be able to use in your journey to play great music.
Now many people don’t really consider themselves particularly creative in life, and there are others who already know their thinking lends to more of the clever side of things.. And really, it mattereth not which one you are today, because what we’re going to do is show you how to notice it in music, and how you can gain the skills for yourself.. Pretty easily, in fact.
Now depending on how you were first introduced to music, you may have just learned to hold your instrument and do whatever the page of sheet music said to do, right?
It’s a common theme amongst many people, but today, I want to open your eyes to what’s really happening, and how noticing certain elements in music will spark, and light a little fire in your mind, it’ll boost your endorphins, and give you a little dose of adrenaline, and also boost your creativity level.
There are different sides to music – Probably way more than I’ll even mention here today, but let’s explore this for a second so we can see the point of today.
One would be the side of listening to another person or group of persons playing music, like on the radio for example, or even live in concert. You know, being the listener and enjoying all that has been created for your benefit.
From the beginning little moment of that music’s concept, it was really just a tiny little twinkling thought in the composer’s mind. And then as the melody developed and manifested itself over time, it will be arranged and then eventually practiced, polished, and performed by different sets of professional musicians, on sometimes many different instruments, and then it still had to be edited and mixed with recording software, and then mastered for consumption..
And, well, we’re not done yet because there’s a whole division of marketing and distribution that has to have been done before it gets to your radio station or concert hall and into your ears.
Whew – it’s quite a process!
Another side would be if you’re the musician playing the music yourself, playing music that someone has written for you. And working on interpreting and playing it in a way that you find satisfying and beautiful.
And then there’s also another side to this, that would be if you’re the person playing the music and if you’re making it up yourself with what you know.
ALL musicians, no matter which part of all the above which I just described, no matter which area of specialization, are considered creative artists. So this includes YOU. Did you know this? It’s true.
Even, and especially those, who perform the compositions that are not their own from just reading it off the sheet music, and usually only after days, weeks, or months or much practice and heavy preparation. These performances are just the result of all the work that went before.
Many people use music as a creative outlet in life, and it’s truly a world-wide universal way to expression, that allows people to dive in and find new thoughts in imagination and especially in making their feelings come alive.
Understanding this will help you appreciate what we’re doing here even more. Once you discover the tools and how to look at what we’re doing here, your level of musicianship will already be increased. Finding the signs and clues of imagination in music will help train you to find these things in every other area of life.
This reminds me of something I found out not too long ago, as I took my not-so-creative (yet very supportive) husband to Disneyland.
Now, I don’t know what your stance is on theme parks like this, but I absolutely LOVE them! In fact, I would go several times a year if my schedule allowed because I find everything there fascinating. What Walt Disney was aiming to do when he started to create fun for his family and friends is just amazing.
You know, Walt Disney had a knack for drawing, and something he loved to do was bringing his drawings to life, and finding a way to animate them was basically something he dedicated his entire life to. He first produced something (that we’d call shorts nowadays), called “laugh-o-grams”.
He was all about entertainment, and he loved stories, and knew that just because he was an adult, he also still enjoyed entertainment and fun themes.
He really wanted to make a place where adults and children could have fun together, and be entertained. This is how his business ideas were born, and aren’t we so glad?
Anyway, I have visited these Disney parks quite a few times in my life, but I had never been there with my husband. So off we went one time, and boy, was I surprised at his reaction!
He really is a very easy to get along with person, and really just goes with the flow of everything, but I found it interesting that he wasn’t just jumping for joy to be there, in the California sunshine at the Disneyland park, with all the bright colors, the sights and sounds all around us.
It was interesting to notice that he was basically seeing the lines, and the more expensive food, instead of all the coolness that had been created for our benefit. He was kind of on the surface of what he noticed.
So, I made it my mission to start pointing some things out to him. I could talk about the fun little facts of a place like this all day, but just to give you an idea of what I started showing him, were things that had to do with the attention to detail- and how even the layout of the park is like an optical illusion – did you know that main street there uses something called forced perspective, which is basically a technique used in architecture to bring, basically an optical illusion. To make something seem taller or smaller than it actually is?
When you’re walking into the park the buildings look taller, and more inviting.
As well as the road looks kind of longer and bigger than it really is, then when you turn around and start to walk back out, the buildings seem shorter and the exit seems a lot closer than it did when you were facing the other direction. It’s really so cool to learn that there are little creative details that can be used in life to enhance our experiences, just like Walt Disney does at his theme parks, and everything he has touched. And music is just another one of these examples!
In fact, as we play music, we can learn the tidbits and the skills that make us sound even more dramatic, and emotional, for example.
So what really is creativity in music and how can we get more of it, so that everything we play is just as fun and exciting as Disneyland? Well, let’s explore this for a few minutes.
Like my husband at Disneyland, just seeing it for its basic face value- he saw the lines and the rides, perhaps you also have just looked at your sheet music as just that- just ‘sheet music’. Moving from one note to the next, and then waiting to arrive at the end.
Well, here’s the absolute secret to this whole subject today: finding and discovering the details about the music and how it’s made, and also different ways it can be played, is going to open your eyes to a whole new world.
Here are some quick examples: we can use keys and chords in music to understand melodies, and we can also change the chords and the keys in music to create new moods and feelings within the exact same music, the same melodies. Here’s the most basic example: if we take a simple melody like Twinkle Twinkle Star, that is usually very bright and cheery sounding in a major key like this:
And then, if we change it into a minor key by taking the notes of the chord (or in our case as flute players, we call them arpeggios), if we take this chord and lower it just a bit, like a step and a half for example, and then if play the melody again, we really can change the entire sound of the piece, all we have to do it slow it down just a little bit then, and it’s like we suddenly turned out the lights, closed the blinds, turned on the hot water, and are stepping into a deep dark-blue claw-footed bathtub for a nice long soak.
At least that’s my interpretation of it right now.
Anyway this episode is just intended to spark the place in your mind that demonstrates that music IS so creative and the more we know about it, the more we can do with it.
We can play a passage like this…
And we can add more details into it that will ignite your imagination –
What did you hear the first time? And what did you hear the second time?
The first one was just how it’s written on the paper. Very accurate in fact. I made sure all of my fingerings were correct, and the tempo was nice and steady.
But…. When you heard me play the second time, you may have noticed that I added some juicy details that gave these exact same notes more direction and more emotion. It almost sounded like I was leaning into something new. I was going somewhere with it. Where? Hmm… well, we’d have to play more of that piece, to find out.
So, dreaming about possibilities is a way to find creativity in your music, and having a large pool of skills to draw from is the way to never run out of imagination and fun.
We can definitely get more into this in the future, but today I wanted to just light a little fire in your mind of what is in store for you here.
And, at Learn Flute Online here, we’re all about making sure that you have the tools to play whatever you want. There are so many different reasons you may be here today, but the reason you started, and the reason you stay are the best.
Ponder on this today as you go about your day, and make sure to find some time in your next practice session to peel your eyes from just seeing the page of music as it is. It really is more than that.
If we only wanted the perfect accurate notes and rhythms from the page then we would just ask the computer to play it for us. Here’s a quick example of this: here I have a little snippet of music written into the computer, and here’s how it sounds when I ask it to play, as a flute.
And now.. If I take this same snippet of music that we demonstrated before, and play it on my flute using some really good knowledge of instrument, theory, and musical interpretation skills.. It sounds like this:
Waaay different, eh?
The human element in music is what makes it so special, and we flutists have an extra opportunity to make it sound amazing because we use our breath to create our sound. This is what makes us flute players kind of cool. It’s definitely a draw to our instrument, and I’m so glad you play the flute!
Well, it’s been a really great day working through this new idea that you really can become a creative artist with your flute. In fact, you already are.. And we’ll continue moving upwards and onwards here! Let’s discover even more about what you can do to spend your time finding creativity in your music as you practice and play. It’ll make it even more fun!
See you next time!
Thank you for Tuning In!
I hope you’ve enjoyed learning about finding creativity in your music. Join us for the next episode!