Often when I am preparing a recording or a major recital, I will paint a series of themed works.
This was easier when my life was more settled and I could leave a painting out in the open for days at a time. Now I am both busier and tidier which has curbed the output of paintings.
Anyway, the impulse produce other art while working on music is a way of manifesting the invisible world of music into a parallel and tangible art form.
The Braun Solo recording projected has manifested itself in these small paragraphs rather than art… somehow the words are more agile than the paintings, slipping into cracks of time and not demanding as much space.
In my creating life (I am allergic to the word ‘creative’ even though it is often the right word), be it making paintings, preparing music or anything else, I always have to be doing something else, looking at the main goal sideways and rarely head-on. This method works well with many things though not, I repeat not, with cooking (smoke alarms figure significantly in my culinary endeavours).
It works simply — when my mind is preoccupied with a painting, suddenly I will have a harmonic or tempo revelation; likewise, when I am playing music, I will suddenly see that I have painted the dragon’s foot on backwards.
And in another way, these very Solos, these small and demanding gems, can be used when I am working hard on other music from other times. Leaving the main goal and cavorting a bit with these little bass-line melodies is a very good way to look sideways at a larger, more menacing sonatas and concerti. It is a way to fracture the despotic goals of mastery/dominion and instead, knit a genuinely playful interpretation.
OK, have to get up at 4:30 a.m. tomorrow to get to my early morning flight to Berkley. Gotta stop playing the bassoon and documenting current tempi (always interesting to see how well these works sound at a variety of speeds) but hard to since I was not able to get to it until evening… a photo shoot for another artist took place in my studio all day. Parallel play of a different sort.