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Be the Mule Blog

Follow the Music

I was invited to be on the radio a bit ago and a host asked me, "so when did you decide to stop playing jazz?" Of course I never decided that and Im not sure what I play, in the many different groups and approaches, is any more or less jazz or rock or spiritual than anyone who is staking a claim to playing a specific style. Im not as concerned about it as I once was. But the entire compartmentalization of sound art, music, into segments to support identity does continue to bother me. 

I think most musicians who are being honest would agree that what you play decides you more than a conscious decision driven by style or genre. 

Music is beautiful because it is everything, it is possibility. 

People talk about markets and how you move within the market and these things, and the truth of it is you just have to be sincere with what you do. Whatever it is you do, and there is an audience for you. Your audience may be smaller than you'd hoped, and it may be in a different part of the world, and it may not afford you homes and cars, but if you are you, and you believe it, it is inspiring, and thats what you should be doing as long as you want to. 

Don't let the teaching own you, let it enable you. Stay inquisitive and rebellious.

We are better off talking about how music feels, how it relates to our lives, than market driven identities. That, after all, is what this is all about, our humanity, thats why we started to celebrating music. Music awoke a part of us we hoped to know better.

That said, and the question that bothered me and all, I've been having a really good time exploring music, playing and writing recently. Our band is adventurous and never complacent live and I'm so happy to be part of what we've built together.

Follow the music. Listen to what Duke has to say about it, around 3:30 in this video ... in the future "the music of the future, when it will be boiled down and left without a category, even the music of jazz... if it sounds good, its gonna be good music, if it doesnt, it wont be music."

Here is some music I've been listening to recently.






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