the ability to not only improvise but improvise *collaboratively* is a means of demonstrating emotional intelligence through sonic expression
your ability to read your partner’s next move during a set is on par with holding your own and articulating yourself in conversation, in other word’s it’s essential
very few conservatories teach improvisation skills outside of specific contexts (i.e. jazz performance, ethnomusicology), which is dumb because “conserving” musical traditions would include improvisations even in western classical settings.
beethoven was known to literally have “improvisation contests” amongst his aristocratic friends, motherfucker could shred.
perhaps the reason we conserve repertoire over improvisational technique is due to the means of assessing a performance. it’s easier for a teacher to point out what sounds “wrong” when there’s only one way it is written on paper.
versus teaching improvisational technique requires the flexibility to allow for something you weren’t expecting as the listener to happen. the question of what sounds “right” or “wrong” is that much more difficult to gauge
this is why professional improvisers outside the traditional classical and jazz circuits often treat every public performance as an open studio for socializing, they allow the audience to sit in on a conversation happening between themselves and collaborators.
it’s incredibly vulnerable having to put your immediate thoughts into immediate sonic expression rather than having the time to write them down, reflect and revise, and *then* present them to the public
just as it’s incredibly vulnerable to have to describe how you’re feeling to the people you care about. as collaborative improviser, you’re speaking your mind plainly, listening to your peers, and responding respectfully within the agreed upon topic.
being vulnerable is human, conversing and sharing is human. improvised music is simply one way to tap into some of the most human elements of art.
we as music educators should be teaching improvisational technique as a fundamental skill alongside theory, ear training, and keyboard studies, as we should aim to nurture healthy humans in the classroom.

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More from @la_meme_young

9 Apr
the pedagogical argument that we should be approaching electroacoustic vs. pop electronic music composition differently beyond strictly the immediate aesthetic level is an outdated and often racialized argument.
barry schrader defines electronic music as anything that requires electronic transduction, something as simple as amplification or speaker reinforcement.
by this definition, we can begin to draw parallels not only from the technological perspective, but from the compositional perspective as well.
Read 12 tweets
6 Apr
just because you’re a great artist does not mean you’re a great arts teacher, or even great articulating your own great art to others
we need less artists “settling” for teaching careers after burning out their own creative practices and losing hope.
what we need more of is more teaching artists who have amalgamated both a social and personal creative practice from the get go.
Read 11 tweets
6 Apr
what is it to be dank as far as sound goes?
my students call it earrape, despite me telling them to find a new word for it.
but what we do agree on is that for some odd reason, the louder it is, the funnier it is.
Read 6 tweets
5 Apr
it’s truly important to always k*ll yr idols to some extent. it’s weird when you come to the point in your artistic career or whatever you wanna call it and you realize half the shit youve learned to do right was through seeing horrible mentors do it wrong.
case in point my high school music teacher taught me exactly how not to foster creativity in a young artist aspiring to get their foot in the door of higher music education
i never did well in music theory class in high school, i ironically failed AP theory one semester cuz i often skipped class to go to auditions and testing programs for music composition bachelors programs
Read 13 tweets
4 Apr
music doesn’t need to require active engaged listening in order for it to have merit, there is joy in leaving something on in the background while completing other tasks
while on the other hand, we can all benefit from actively listening to the # menial sounds that surround our day to day. does your personal acoustic ecology have a noticeable noise floor? what about a noticeable pitch?
it’s almost as if the recorded sound media is incredible because it allows us to *choose* whether to engage with it directly or allow it just to exist in our surroundings while we go about our day
Read 7 tweets
3 Apr
critical music education is the music teacher holding a mirror up to themselves and asking the question “am i being aesthetically dictatorial?”
a music teacher should never allow their aesthetic biases to become the basis for the concepts they are teaching. we can talk about four part harmony without focusing solely on baroque, just like we can talk improvisation without focusing solely on jazz.
it’s almost expected that the conservatory setting will be dictatorial to some extent, the job is to “conserve” “art” music, and in the western world that means almost exclusively concert music from the 1500s-1800s
Read 10 tweets

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