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  • Writer's pictureKevin Keller

Day 11: Exciting patterns

Updated: Feb 23, 2021

Today was strange, unexpected, and ultimately very fun and productive.

With the suggestion to focus on acoustic piano and create something with "excitement", I began the session by playing with analog synth sequences. In retrospect, a counterintuitive move, but I guess that's how I work sometimes. After a couple hours of experimenting, I had a 2-minute track that was sonically cool, but totally derivative of 80's techno. After lunch, I pulled an Oblique Strategy card (thank you, Brian Eno) which read:

"Discover the recipes your are using, and abandon them"

Haha! So, I threw out everything and started over, from scratch, with the tempo and meter being the only thing that remained. I created an entirely new sequence on the Moog, and then sat at the piano. After a couple minutes, I found myself playing about as fast as I can possibly play. It was exhausting, and exciting!

From here, the track finally went in a good direction. I kept thinking I would take a break to go outside, but it never materialized because I just needed to get this track sounding good enough to share.

This music was inspired by the memory of driving fast through the morning mist, in the Sacramento Valley, with row upon row of orchards fanning out on the side of the road. Tomorrow, I'll be really diving into this feeling and taking this music as far and deep as I can go.

What does this music bring up for you as you listen? Where do you think it might go next?

Please comment below.

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James Shriver
James Shriver
Feb 12, 2021

I’m exhausted but revived with a sense of calm. Really enjoyed.


Feb 12, 2021

The track is very engaging. I was drawn to the base notes beginning about 1:00 of the track (I don’t know if it is properly called “base notes” or what, I would imagine in a traditional rock band that that sequence of notes would be played on the bass guitar).

I look forward to hearing your next day’s work.

I appreciated your reference to Brian Eno’s techniques for enhancing creativity which I had heard discussed in a podcast. And I appreciated that you applied this to your own creative activity.


Feb 11, 2021

For me, the track starts off with a business...a benign urgency. I am propelled by rhythmic hints of Congos. The Rush-ish theme that emerges about 1 minute is energizing and empowering.

As the track concludes, I am left asking "OK...where to next?"


Feb 11, 2021

mo' bettah for me! keep jumping off the cliff!

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