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Thoughts on the music-making process

Over the past few years, I've enjoyed collecting quotes from mentors and people I admire.  Many of these quotes have greatly shaped who I am as a person and musician, and how I approach the music-making process.  As I continue to grow, my approach to making music continues to change as I learn what works, what doesn't, and how I can better connect with the people around me.

*Attributions noted when possible.  Over the years I can't remember exactly who's said what...if you know, please let me know!


Fail big, fail forward. 


Rehearse for attitude.  -Michael Votta

Invest in the experience, don’t take from others.

Conquer the league you are in.


It's not the rate of change, but the rate of the rate of change. -Michael Votta


The ideal musician should think with the heart and feel with the intellect.  -Nadia Boulanger


Indifference and music making cannot coexist.  

Music demands a permanently passionate attitude regardless of the level of aptitude.  -Daniel Barenboim 


Situational Awareness...Are you aware of your situation?


Truth isn’t handed to you, it’s pursued.   

Backup instinct with craft.  The more you have a craft, the more instinct you can release.


I want to find out how it ends…. Play with purpose!   


“... making a decision was only the beginning of things.  When someone makes a decision, he is really diving into a strong current that will carry him to places he had never dreamed of when he first made the decision.”  -The Alchemist 


Outer tempo vs. inner tempo 


Outer music vs. inner music


The darkest hour of the night comes just before dawn.  


Emotions are our fuel.


Character development…musically, personally 

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