Monday, August 17, 2009

Joe Satriani 2; importance of developing your craft the right way

Following up from my first Satriani post, here is another segment from the Joe Satriani interview that I especially like. This clip is part 10 (of 11 total).
[Apologies again for the wide frame]

I transcribed the comments I think are the most illuminating:
There’s no substitute for practicing. Students have to be completely honest with themselves about what they don’t know, and that they have to get on track and start learning it. . . . You don’t have to learn it all today, but do something where every day you get better and better. . . . It’s really quite obvious, we just have to be very straightforward with ourselves, and that’s how we arrange our practicing. But I would say that, and I remind students all the time, they will not have a career based on the demonstration of practice techniques. [. . .]

The ultimate goal is playing music, being evocative, lifting people’s spirits, being an entertainer; it’s all part of it. The practicing is supposed to help you do that. [. . .]

Find out what it’s like to play for human beings. . . . I don’t want to reduce it to a job, but I mean that’s what a musician does; Society wants musicians to make music for them—I mean, that’s what we’re supposed to be doing. So, if you’re practicing and it’s not helping you do that, well then you’re not practicing right. [emphasis mine]

I think the key phrase above can be altered to apply to all realms of art:

Society wants artists to make art for them. That's what artists are supposed to be doing. Indeed!

By this, I mean that great art is made both for the artist and for his audience. It's the for the audience part that I think, especially in artistic realms outside music (which immediately dies as a money-earning venture if it ignores the audience), tends to get lost today. Great art involves a relationship, a community of sorts, between artist and audience.

1 comment:

  1. I love this idea because I need artists to show me who I am. I ran across a great quote today from a writer's perspective on that relationship between artist & audience:

    The writer isn't made in a vacuum. Writers are witnesses. The reason we need writers is because we need witnesses to this terrifying century.
    -- E. L. Doctorow


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