You ever think about what music is? Why does it seem that there is a past, present and future?
There is only this moment in time that passes, and is gone. But our mind fills in consciousness and makes it seem like a composition has space.
It really only exists for that tiny moment. I'm into physics and the nature of reality. There is no past, there is no future, there is only now, and then that is gone. What constitutes persistent state?
No I haven't smoking hooch.
Going to the Giuliana thing about repeating yourself, Jeff Porcaro does this a heckuva lot...but would you call that signature fill he has unmusical?
It's when he uses it, how he hits it, how he places it, how it ties the music together a certain way. I think it is really musical! It has so many uses.
I must admit, I find Giuliana's drumming sometimes unmusical, it doesn't breathe or move the phrases along. He is too "visible" inside the music. He is commenting and pushing, how can you listen when you are commenting in 32nd and 16th notes...anyway.
If he were to play Us and Them by Pink Floyd, would he be interjecting constantly? That would be unmusical.
I remember listening to a grad student's electronic music compositions a few years ago...literally static. No tonality. it was puzzling.
Neil talks about the commonality of language and drumming, FZ did as well. We look for familiar patterns and then decide those are things we like and are pleasing to us, and are therefore musical. We like repetition, I find musical playing has some layer of repetition. Piano phrasing repeats, as do most musical instruments. A musical composition is typically not one long slog through endless notes. There is tension and resolution in the best.
It takes facility on the instrument to be able to handle those concepts, certainly. We play a instrument with limited potentiality for melodic phrasing. People talk about playing melodies on drums, but that's not just banging out Mary Had a Little Lamb. How do we get past the simple phrasing into something at the next level...
We can turn to music theory for some answers to these questions...
"There are two schools of thought on phrasing," says flautist Nancy Toff: "one more intuitive, the other more analytical. The intuitive school uses a verbal model, equating the function of phrasing with that of punctuation in language. Thus, said Chopin to a student, 'He who phrases incorrectly is like a man who does not understand the language he speaks.'"
I think this riff/phrase is one of the most musical I've ever heard. It sticks in my head and I will find myself twisting it around and humming it. It's got groove, weirdness, and the notes work well with each other. Perhaps if drummers think like a guitarist it would give us some insight to musicality.