Monday, February 6, 2012

Tim Price Blogging for Rico-Focus-Inspiration & the zone of creativity.

Tim Price Blogging for Rico-Focus-Inspiration & the zone of creativity.

~There's a euphoria and a feeling of deep interaction with what you're creating. You're inside something. I'm not standing there trying to be someone else by playing someone else's style or licks. My goal is to start from zero and try to add something to the music. This is something I've learned and been influenced by studying with masters such as Charlie Mariano, who has a great internalization of not only saxophone command but commitment to creativity. You have to understand even if you're playing simple triadic rock n' roll or the most harmonically ad vanced stuff. You're going for a groove. I have an unreleased CD that's called " Bombay Bar Walking" , and the vibe is no matter if you're at a corner bar in Philly and you're playing tenor in the pocket or you're sitting crossed legged with a tabla player to your right-no matter what you're going for that zone. That's where its at. That zone that everyone looks for. That is my spring board.

My inspiration comes from the masters. And by that I mean having respect for what came before me and the people who created it. There's nothing in this world that's more inspiring than listening to Dexter Gordon play a blues. The average person walking the street has no idea who Dexter Gordon is and no clue to what sitting down and listening to an artist like that can do for you. That might be more of a therapeutic thing for the human race than handing out hand fulls of prozac and riddelin . When I was a kid I would kick back and put on a record in the mid-60's when I was in high school of Sonny Stitt and Gene Ammons, that music came from such a g reat place emotionally that no matter what happened that day I was chilled out. To take it a step further I've been very lucky in my life that the tenor saxophone has been part of my DNA. It's an inspiration that goes far beyond any words I can say. Hopefully its something people will hear in my music.

My experience can be summed up into something I heard Stan Getz refer to as the "Alpha State". This is a frame of mind and again something similar as I've described earlier about being in the zone. It's a very important mind set, not something that just happens. As musicians we should all be grateful that we can pick up our instrument and create. And that goes for just finding a reed, playing some scales to get loose, or rehearsing with friends just to play. There's a spirituality like no other in getting together with like minds and going into a room for the pure sake of playing and just looking at each other and saying... yeah; and letting the music transcend.

When I improvise, I try to keep in mind what pianist Paul Bley said about composition, "Improvising is composing in real time." If you're writing a lot it becomes a lot easier compositionally. I try to find a certain point in the day and just jot down four or more measures, or a sequence of notes I like in my notebook. For over 20 years I had the honor of studying with Charlie Bacanos. he prepared me for this kind of mind set. Keep in mind I was touching on it before, but I got more focus from Charlie. My inspiration comes from daily preparation and practice. It helps me move faster and also not lose track of what I'm hearing in my minds ear.

A few years ago, I had the honor of playing a Coltrane tribute at Loyola University in New Orleans with my friend Tony Degradi on saxophone and a great band that included drummer Stanton Moore from the band Galactic. This concert was done on Trane's birthday, a year before Katrina. We had a great program of music prepared. The night before we played at The Snug Harbor Club to a packed house. It was great feeling being in New Orleans and playing with these musicians. As the gig started I felt a very deep connection within the music. We were playing Trane based music, obviously. I had rearranged some of the tunes like Ole for me playing electro-bassoon and Tony on Soprano Sax. In addition we were hitting some two Tenor things that just gave me chills. As the gig went on everything was where it was suppose to be and just kept going and going fantastically. At the end of that gig I had a feeling from being in New Orleans where there's a very deep spiritual vibe and playing this concert on Trane's birthday-something I've never felt in my life, it was really cool to say the least.

In closing I would like to suggest these books:
The first book is called 'The Artist's Way' by Julie Cameron. It helps you focus day to day in your practice and provides daily activities. It's a must read. Also I highly suggest checking out 'The Mysticism of Sound and Music' by Hazrat Inayat Khan along with his other book 'The Music of Life'. These three books will really inspire you and are fantastic reading. Thank you!

BY THE WAY...The picture at the top of this weeks blog is Bob Weir and I hanging at
this years 2012 NAMM show at Theo Wanne booth.GOOD TIMES! ( Pic' by Matt Ambrose )

~ Tim Price

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