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bparham77
12-09-2003, 02:49 AM
What is soul? How do you go about getting it? And how do you know when u got it? I mean I'm sitting hear listening to Jimi Hendrix strumming the acoustic and sweetly singing 'Angel' and instantly I know he's got it. I feel his pain. I make that connection. Soul is in his voice. It's in his playing. Ani Difranco's got it. The way she thrashes at her guitar, those delicate lyrics she weaves. That angry anjelic voice. Blind Willie Johnson, Skip James; two notes, one vocal almost enough to make you wanna cry. Hell I would trade all the technique in the world to play with that kind of raw human emotion.
Maybe the answer to this question lies in the answer to another intriguing and equally as perplexing question. Why does music move us at all? Why do we rush out and buy those minty new releases? Why do we horde the classics? Why was I so delighted when my Django download finished. I guess music has the ability to slice through the hum drum repetition of everyday. The ability to find meaning in the meaningless. To look at the sunset and see more than a sunset. To borrow past all those self defeating defense mechanisms, to get past all the insignificant games and roles we play in modern day life. The worker, the son, the daughter, the teacher, the student, the consumer, the slave. Maybe music captures the raw power of human potential even if its just for three minutes and twenty seconds?
Hell I don't know what I am talking about and I am just rambling. But I will say this. I have not been able to play my instrument for the last 3 or 4 days and my soul is the lesser for it. I yearn to pick up my guitar and grab some soul and head out on another journey of self discovery, even if its only for 3 minutes and 20 seconds.

szulc
12-09-2003, 04:20 AM
We would all love to know he answers to these and other similar questions.
It is good that you are asking these questions, because it means you can detect IT when you hear IT.

Hell I would trade all the technique in the world to play with that kind of raw human emotion.
You would have to possess it before you could trade it!
But I understand your point!

What is 'feel' or 'soul'? I can't put my finger on it or weight it or hold it in my hands but I know it is real (at least I BELIEVE it is).
At some point this becomes like religion or philosophy.
The sad truth is if you don't have IT to begin with you will probably never get IT. It is all about what you want musically and emotionally. If you want to be a 'soul' or 'feel' player, try to listen to as much of this kind of thing as possible. Then try to see if you can detect how the artist felt during the performance.
Try to put yourself in this similar frame of mind when you play.
Play things differently depending on your mood.

Pretty soon you'll know if you possess IT in a large or small quantity.

Bizarro
12-09-2003, 06:36 AM
I think you just have to find something you are passionate about, and then play/sing it with all the feeling you can muster. It's also about being honest and playing music for music's sake.

Don't try impress anybody with a trick or anything. Play what is needed.

I think Dave Mustaine has a ton of soul on his Peace Sells and other older Megadeth albums. You can tell he really is a politically minded guy and he's singing/playing things he cares about. It comes through to me in the music and I think it's very powerful!:) I don't get the same vibe from the newer stuff, but that's just my opinion.

Spin 2513
12-10-2003, 02:39 AM
it's not Marilyn Manson.

Bongo Boy
12-10-2003, 04:38 AM
Originally posted by zeppenwolf
It's the byproduct of integrity.

Do you still want some? That's a very wonderful way to look at it. Some of the other comments I find, in a weird way, consistent with this idea. The 'if you've got it, you've got' perspective is an example. But here's a mad rambling to explain what I mean:

It's all about the motivation. For example, if the motivation is to 'be the best', to 'make your mark', to 'make a statement', then I really think you have a goal, or an ambition. These things are accepted as positive things in the world most of us live in, but 'ambition' is used, universally, as a negative trait in much of so-called 'Eastern' philosophies. Why?

My naive interpretation is this: ambition puts an emphasis on an outcome or destination--when the focus should rightly be on the Path. I don't behave in a certain way because of the promise of eternal salvation--what a bogus reason to do the right thing! I do the right thing because...it's the Right Thing.

So it is with having soul--maybe. I don't aspire to have feel or swing or to be 'successful'. Instead, I'm compelled to 'speak' thru the instrument..saying anything I choose to. What I THINK this means is that I start 'speaking' when I have something to say, I'm only constrained by myself, and I stop when I think I should--not when 3 minutes are up. If I have a 90 second 300 bpm statement to make--I make it. If I can only do it with downstrokes, I do it that way.

I'm your basic moron on guitar, okay? Buy sometimes I just pick that thing up, turn on the amp, and do goofy power chords till I literally get tears of laughter. It's not serious, it's not really music, and it's certainly not got anything I'd call 'technical'. I spank that thing (as best I can) to a rhythm I really feel. It's 'soul' in the sense that I get a jolt, a laugh, or a tear from it. The ONLY rules are that it should 'sound good'. Pretty subjective, eh?

The Point is this: you have the Feeling first, and the desire to hear something that makes you just go nuts. That's it, to me. You can design the Feeling (like they do to engineer pop hits--'cause it's just really sophisticated marketing), or you can let it happen. "Letting it happen" is why you have super talented artists who go years without releasing anything, "designing it" is why you can have crap album after crap album released from otherwise gifted people.

Jeeeez...did I ramble on a bit?

Bongo Boy
12-10-2003, 04:52 AM
Oh here's a surprise, I had a little more to say on the topic. :D

szulc, in another thread, posted a link to Pat Martino's web site. At that site, some PhD unit had transcribed Pat's solo on Oleo, done somewhere at some time. Here's a clue. The transcription indicates 4/4 time signature thru most of the solo, but has two (or three) sections where a one-bar 6/8 is followed by a 12-bar (?) 5/8, returning to 4/4.

Okay, what is Bongo's Point? I think Pat played his solo and did his thing. Only the analyst would have discovered the goofy 5/8 bar followed by the 6/8 section, etc. It wasn't engineered that way--I may embarass myself here because I'm such a dork, but I don't THINK anyone would have 'designed' the solo this way. I don't know. My impression is...Pat did some stuff that sounded good and made sense rhythmically, at the time.

It's like that quote that was printed here earlier about a John Lennon tune...the analysts come up with all kinds of crap the artist never even thought of (and could not have possibly known about). The artist was simply Creating from the Heart. Man I like that stuff.

Spin 2513
12-11-2003, 05:14 AM
Originally posted by Bongo Boy
szulc, in another thread, posted a link to Pat Martino's web site. At that site, some PhD unit had transcribed Pat's solo on Oleo, done somewhere at some time. Okay, what is Bongo's Point? I think Pat played his solo and did his thing. Only Mr PhD Music Guy would have discovered the goofy 5/8 bar followed by the 6/8 section, etc. It wasn't engineered that way-- I don't THINK anyone would have 'designed' the solo this way. I don't know. My impression is...Pat did some stuff that sounded good and made sense rhythmically, at the time.

.
I have a few words about this
Pat has the Hectagon thing happening , and no one else does.It's in the mind , and away from numbers and into something more , like a river is ,to a case of bottled water.
You can't blast to the moon and land on a fraction , either, you make it or you don't . Fractions are dianetic physics , that's all for theory. Pat is was on to something , and took it somewhere, and made everyone go , "what is he thinking ?" Ofcourse if any one knew the answer was ,a Kalidescope , or a Prism , they probably wouldn't have asked .

szulc
12-14-2003, 03:05 PM
It is common for transcribers to take everthing very literally in stead of the concept of loose or slipping timing and rubato they 'l write out a series of sextuplets with rubato as quintuplet, sextuplet, heptuplet and the artist was just thinking sextuplets but being loose with his sense of time. For a classic example of this look at the transcriptions of Far Beyond the sun by Yngwie. An listen to what he is dong and how he is slipping time. Sure in the fixed time of the rest of the band it is 5,6,7 but in his Mind I am sure he was thing 6,6,6 (starting behind the beat and pushing ahead of the beat).

Spin 2513
12-16-2003, 11:59 PM
Originally posted by szulc
It is common for transcribers to take everthing very literally in stead of the concept of loose or slipping timing and rubato they 'l write out a series of sextuplets with rubato as quintuplet, sextuplet, heptuplet and the artist was just thinking sextuplets but being loose with his sense of time. For a classic example of this look at the transcriptions of Far Beyond the sun by Yngwie. An listen to what he is dong and how he is slipping time. Sure in the fixed time of the rest of the band it is 5,6,7 but in his Mind I am sure he was thing 6,6,6 (starting behind the beat and pushing ahead of the beat).

You must be reading my mind. i was thinking Malmsteen , too , when the issue of" note cramming" came up. It seems to be, in Live improv , Y.J. , does alot of that.

I got his 'Play Loud Clinic" VCD , and he does far "Beyond the Sun "at the end , and it seems , he's not even trying to play in the mesure, or look at the guitar , for that matter. He seems to be having fun ,though. Too, bad they didn't use the Smoke Machine , in the Video , that would have really made it. Or , maybe a BBQ grill , i don't know.