Some music involves playing exact parts with no improvisation at all. Other styles, such as rock, jazz, or Latin, are based on varying levels of improvisation. In every case, listening is of paramount importance in order to keep the band or orchestra sounding like one cohesive unit. In improvisational settings, reacting to things happening in the moment requires the mind to be centered on every member of that group.
There are any number of things that can cause these roadblocks – a malfunctioning piece of equipment, difficulty hearing the other musicians, the stage setup, or the greatest of them all – the mind, which houses the various stresses of life that, at times, seem to swirl around in endless circles. In all of these situations, I remind myself that drumming is one of my greatest life’s pleasures and treasures. Since most of these issues cannot be solved at the moment, I try to focus on creating music.
It’s a good idea not to get too wrapped up in our individual performance. It’s extremely important to realize that each of us is just one part of a larger picture.
As a drummer, I lock in with the bass player first, [A company’s mission, vision, values, and goals.] as these are the core instruments creating the foundation – the groove and feel of a song.
Then I move on to the instruments that create the harmonic and melodic considerations of the music.[In business, the necessary areas of support; eg. finance, PR, Human Resources, etc.]
Understanding the function of each instrument, [In business the division, group, or individual.] and tuning into those different elements by listening, will enrich the result of our work.
The above is from a 2013 interview with Rod Morgenstein the focus of the interview on listening skills.
Guitarist Steve Morse on Listening – IC Interview
Kasim Sultan: One Word – Focus – IC Interview
Arnold McCuller – Listening for the Spirit – IC Interview
Jordan Rudess — Listening with Focus – IC Interview
Nick Beggs — Listening means Understanding Relationships – IC Interview
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