On Tue, Aug 14, 2012 at 4:29 PM, Roger <rclo...@verizon.net> wrote:

> And any creative act comes out of the blue if it is truly creative (new).
> Improved jazs would be a good example of that. I believe that
> John Coltrane's solos came out of the Platonic world.
> Roger , rclo...@verizon.net
Hi Roger,

Jazz players do not, with possible exception of free Jazz (and even here it
is debatable), play completely "out of the blue". Sure, players value the
risky creative spark of playing out of the blue, but in Mike Stern's words:
"If you play too much like that  (getting from point A to B in a song on
pure intuition, purposefully disregarding some set of the Song's fixed
frame of parameters; the melody, tempo, harmony, rhythm, accents, phrasing
etc.), you'll sound like you don't know what you're doing."

Check out the demo version of the program "band in a box". Here you can set
tempo, style and harmony, and the program will generate you a Bill Evans,
Miles Davis, Coltrane, Herbie Hancock solo in midi commands. Of course this
sounds pretty artificial as the notes are spit out as raw midi through a
mediocre synthesizer in the program. But if you take those midi commands
and use them as input for a rich digital sampler, programmed with thousands
of notes, different articulation, phrases, and phrasing for different
tempos... I think you'd be surprised at the quality.

Tenor Sax is difficult to render convincingly, due to phrasing/articulation
issues, and we still need a few more years and more powerful machines to do
so. But Piano is much more tractable problem in this sense. Sure, I cannot
convince somebody who knows Keith Jaretts improvisation of "Body and Soul"
that our Computers improvise with such nuance yet (disregard the imagery of
the video, if you want to hear the song:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fY5rzzZENsE). But Keith is standing on a few
hundred years of piano tradition and improvisation, while we have been
coding our computers to improvise only for the last 20 years: still, in
most of computer generated sample-based music today in TV, advertising,
movies etc., I'd bet the majority of casual listeners already cannot tell
that the pianist or orchestra is a PC somewhere with a human operator.

Not many composers are open to the public about this, but composers versed
in programming low-level languages, such as MAX for example, have
programmed musical environments so rich, that most of what they do, after
the programming, is wait for the environment to spit out something
rich/interesting to them, just tweaking this value or parameter somewhere
in the environment or changing just a single input, to huge effect. Most
people think a big mixing desk with a hundred channels is amazing. With
enough computing power, you can chain dozens of these monsters, route them
through the strangest effect algorithms, and create a sonically compelling
thunderstorm out of a single kick drum sample.

Old famous example, how to turn a bass drum into a thunderstorm with a few
virtual mixers' sends routed into each other:

So, we'll never turn the computer into Keith Jarett or John Coltrane. But
its getting closer everyday. Even thunderstorms :) your computer can get
pretty close to.

There is so much interesting music out there being made today, even if its
not publicly visible for commercial reasons.

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