A Composer's Adventures

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Psychology

A Lion’s Intuition

lion land rover

Years ago I visited South Africa and went on a number of safaris. One day while riding in a Land Rover we saw a lion under a tree panting heavily with his tongue hanging out. I asked if he was suffering from the heat and the guide said no, the lion had just overeaten, because — like all lions — he didn’t know where his next meal was coming from.… Read the rest

Buttons and Panels

Gandhi

How can you adjust emotionally to difficult people in a work setting? Such moments can occur between conductor and player or between two musicians in rehearsal to the point of interfering with the performance. Musicians are by nature sensitive people, particularly prone to being affected by conflicts.… Read the rest

Creative Deficiency Disorder

Colgrass Drums Sepia

My first drum set, in 7th grade.

Hyperactive kids are often diagnosed with ADHD, but I have my own diagnosis for the parents and school officials who allow disruptive children to be medicated: CDD, or Creative Deficiency Disorder.

As a child, I was constantly distracted and disruptive in elementary school, dying to create something without realizing it (see more in my autobiography).… Read the rest

Down the Rabbit Hole

Alice Enters the Rabbit Hole

A window display from Fortnum and Mason in London depicts Alice and the rabbit.

I just had a lively discussion with someone I disagreed with — myself! Deep down, I have always felt that artists come into this world with their work and creative paths already mapped out for them.… Read the rest