The topic of originality has loomed large in my head lately. I recently undertook a challenge to produce two 3-minute pieces of original music by October 31. I failed to meet that commitment, failed pretty hard in fact. The most challenging aspect of this endeavor was the fact that these songs were to be my own art, not made for or with another person. (I am a composer by trade, and have collaborated in many bands, so making music with or for other people comes naturally. But I have never made much art that is strictly mine.)

What came up for me as I toiled for long hours in the studio, hunched in front of the computer and not having very much fun, was the desire to be original. Not just to create an original-sounding piece or to have my material judged as original in the aggregate, but to embody originality in my work down to the finest possible granularity. Every part of every song would need to sound like no other part of no other song ever made! (Don’t worry, as this sounds as preposterous to me as I write it as it does to you reading it.)

And so, after writing a perfectly good

Comments are closed.