Mudcat Café message #175704 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #17950   Message #175704
Posted By: SeanM
09-Feb-00 - 03:07 PM
Thread Name: What is improvisation ?
Subject: RE: What is improvisation ?
Paul, we live in a world where that's getting to be the norm.

90% of the 'popular' acts on the concert circuit these days are so choreographed on stage that there's no room for improvisation - not that several of them could even play an instrument to improvise off of.

A while back, a small scrap broke out in a local music 'zine, about whether these spectacles could rightly be called concerts any more. Personally, I think not.

In any case, I've been to a few "big name" modern alterntative shows where they're not afraid to break out of the set stereotype for each song. One of my all time favorite live bands of the "alternative" genre is the Violent Femmes. They do the normal 'hit' songs that most of the crowd expects, but I've also seen them do gospel, 20 minute long acid jazz improvisation sets in the middle of otherwise normal songs, and perhaps more importantly, never seen them do the same set list twice (even on the same tour).

As I said earlier, improvisation is the heart and soul of music. Cut that out, and we'll all be stuck listening to the Backstreet Boys.