Hello. This is my second blog. ENJOY!
What inspires us to do something creative? What inspires us to do anything at all? I believe that creativity begins with waking up in the morning (or afternoon). I believe that everyone is creative. Some people just might not have found what they are creative at and unfortunately might never find it. AND, I believe that my talent with music is average on it’s own, but is most creative and original when there is some sort of inspiration the creativity can latch onto.
One of my favorite personal compositions (I don’t like the term ‘original composition’ since technically every composition is an original composition) is a song I wrote in 2010 entitled “My Inspiration”. It’s not my first work but definitely my first work worth holding onto. One day while walking to class after having lunch with my girlfriend at the time, a melody popped into my head. I immediately took out whatever paper was in my pocket and jotted down what I heard then finished the song that evening after class at a piano. I called it “My Inspiration” because I felt that spending time with my then-girlfriend helped inspire that melody. Or it could have been something I saw or heard or smelled while walking to class... Whatever it was, something inspired a beautiful melody to pop into my head.
“My Inspiration” opened my eyes to composing in a ‘dedicated to’ type fashion. My favorite personal compositions are composed using this technique. I have written songs (all instrumental) about relationships, cities I’ve spent time in, stories, quotes, and tribute compositions for some of my favorite musicians and role models such as; Woody Allen, Chick Corea, my Grandfather, Bill Evans, and Dr. Seuss…
I want to talk about two recent compositions of mine.
My most recent work is a song entitled, “Old Bourbon.” It was inspired by a travel story I heard on NPR. The article was about a man who traveled around Japan looking for interesting bars and taverns. One of his favorites was a tavern that only carried centuries-old bourbon with most bottles dating back to the 1800s. The reason this tavern holds the tradition is unlike wine that ages with time, whisky never ages. So the idea is that when someone drinks this hundred-year-old bourbon, he or she is drinking history. After hearing this story on the radio I was immediately inspired to write a song for it. My process was to close my eyes, picture the man walking into the Japanese tavern for the first time, the man experiencing the hundred-year-old bourbon…then listen and transcribe the song I hear in my head.
The second composition I want to talk about is one of my favorite ballads I wrote entitled, “What’s Her Name?” Last year I passed by a girl a few times a day for a few weeks, which eventually formed a little crush. Regrettably, I never learned her name and either she or I was always in a rush so we never got to stop and chat. After about a week of passing smiles and eye flirts, I wrote an entire song envisioning what possibilities her name might be. The end result became one of my favorite songs to perform.
I hope my ramblings help you in your search for inspirations, help you in transforming your inspirations into your individually creative outlets, or at least gave you an enjoyable 5-minute read. Please email or call me if you have any questions about what I wrote or if you’d like to further discuss this topic! :)