Musical Join-The-Dots

Steve Jobs

I’ve been away for a few days, catching up with friends eating and drinking, hence the lack of posts so I thought I’d share some of our shared thoughts with you.

This weekend I spent a lot of time discussing music with some friends in Canterbury.  We spoke about all the music we used to listen to and where we have come to now.  It was quite interesting to hear how, although we all started in essentially the same place, each of us has had our own influences which have led us all on completely separate musical Journeys.  This got me thinking about a great quote I heard on from Steve Jobs some time ago:

“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards” –Steve Jobs

 This was taken from Steve Jobs’ Stanford University commencement speech in 2005, which if you haven’t seen you absolutely must watch.

without musing about the inspirational life and times of Steve Jobs and focussing purely on that quote it completely rings true whilst talking about music.  What he meant by this is, no matter how you plan or structure there are always external factors that will affect the final outcome.  That effect may be positive or negative but it is there.  Retrospectively we can say, well if it wasn’t for ‘A’ I would never have got to ‘B,’ and that is what he meant.

In discussing our current likes and dislikes it was quite clear to me that the events and choices we had made individually had dramatically affected our current musical identities.  Speaking personally I can trace back and attribute trends and preferences in my own musical journey to specific individuals and periods of my life.  I would recommend to anyone currently producing and recording their own music to take an artist that you aspire to and join the dots backwards.

The one danger I identified was that it is too easy to constantly look back.  to develop you have to look forward as well and ignore genre-specific stereotyping.  More on this in my next post.

happy music making, and may you perfect guitar take never clip!

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