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Author Topic: The Sound of Schizophrenia... and open discussion  (Read 301 times)
nickc
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« on: June 27, 2017, 10:12:54 PM »

I'd like to share this with you, this song is called "In Through the Out Doors" and is the closest representation of my musical mind to date. The music is improvised and then the lyrics were composed and added afterwards. The Doors have been a massive inspiration for me, especially Jim Morrison. I've always felt that we would get along just fine... all the way down to the unfortunate struggle with alcohol.

There was a post on here a few days ago which discussed addiction and drugs which UNFORTUNATELY was deleted... it provided a fascinating look into the minds and personal choices of various people in different circumstances on this forum... it was a true learning experience. What a shame that internet censorship took the reins. That post got me thinking... addiction is a prevalent problem and so is mental illness. Why and how, are they so closely related? Why does a pint of beer (or 2 or 3) quiet the mind? Does the mental illness exacerbate the addiction or does the addiction exacerbate the mental illness? Why do doctors happily prescribe Thorazine or benzodiazepines... but not a 6 pack? I mean c'mon... look at the people around the world who are addicted to prescription medications (of all sorts)... what a tough road to break free from. Do they function in a negative symbiotic relationship (addiction and mental health that is)? Curious... so many artists, scientists and composers struggled greatly with substance abuse. I feel this needs to be addressed in further detail via open discussion.

This song explores my world...inwards and outwards. The "schizophrenic whisperings" that you hear, are exactly what it sounds like in my mind on a daily basis. For any of you suffering from mental illness, I don't have to explain how confusing it can be at times. Music is a fantastic way of coping with the symptoms and in fact, I find the "illness" can be a catalyst for great creativity. I  look at it this way... creativity has an opposite. The farther out of your mind you are, the graver the psychological consequences, but the rewards seem to be profound (even though few others understand your point of view) Don't loose your footing... as it is quite difficult to find your way back.

Musically speaking, this piece opens up with a 1960's/1970's Mor Lam Isaan style introduction (Mor Lam is a style of music in rural Thailand). The piece features improvised Organ, keyboards, bass and percussion and although a structure is maintained, the harmonics and rhythmic patterns are constantly shifting. There is a lot of Baroque and contrapuntal ideas explored and I'd like to add that the madrigals of Palestrina played a large role in the vocal shaping.

The hard pounding percussion that is dominant in the left speaker, is representative of my views on the government and the military industrial complex... always watching and trying to play god with the help of the worlds elite bankers and puppets... and their ploy to further assist in the degradation of society with satan at the helm. I chose the length of this piece before hand as 13 minutes is approximately the same length as The Doors: "When the musics over" (live at the hollywood bowl, my favorite performance of their masterpiece) Also, I'm a fan of Arnold Schoenberg and he suffered from triskaidekaphobia (the fear of the number 13) so why not? hehe...

 posting this kind of thing online is difficult for no other reason other than paranoia... but I just keep telling myself, so what? what exactly is going to happen? "who" is going to "get me"? so what? I actually find this therapeutic as I post my music all the time on here so why should this be any different and why on earth should I be frightened of the government reading the piano forum... it's nonsense! The mind is powerful..

For those of you who are familiar with The Doors, I hope you will find my keyboard dedication to Ray Manzarek worthy... He was a true inspiration for me as a pianist.

This was recorded at home wiht a Korg SV-1 keyboard and a Zoom H2 handy recorded.

Take care,

Nicholas

Looking forward to an open discussion about this subject.

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nickc
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« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2017, 01:16:22 AM »

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timothy42b
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« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2017, 12:47:49 PM »

My experience working about 10 years in state mental hospitals was that while mental illness sufferers DID try to self medicate with drugs and alcohol, it made their symptoms worse.  The medically prescribed drugs did perform better, although of course there were side effect issues.  There are no good answers.

As far as the creativity issue goes, I think there is a relationship, unfortunately.  Creating something new, as well as improving technique, requires making an error.  (personal theory - feel free to ignore)  Doing the same thing consistently does not result in something new - in fact you can master consistency to the point where you can't move forward.  This can be a speed wall, if we're talking technique, or a robotic performance, or an uninteresting improvisation.

where does error come from?  We all have some, random firing of neurons I suspect; some of us have more than others.  Some of us are inspired to attempt increasing the error by various means, some healthier than others.  Musicians and artists have always turned to drugs, which work but at horrendous cost.  Others thrive on sheer pressure - which also carries some risks.  I have a friend who is a skilled arranger of big band jazz - he is a health nut EXCEPT when he's working on a project he sleep deprives himself.  I'm sure he does that to increase his error rate, but he's not aware of that. 
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Tim
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« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2017, 08:34:45 PM »

I was thinking about the some of the issues raised in recent thread(s) and was inclined to post about it. It seems to me that highly gifted, artistically temperamental individuals are more prone to (being euphemistic here) "aberrant behaviour" than the norm, probably because they often are not "normal" people. There are plenty examples one might cite. However there is a dangerous and, it seems to me, fallacious argument which has been mythologised as a consequence of these people, namely "if you indulge in extreme behaviour it will open your mind and enhance creativity". I'm willing to concede that for a very few individuals it may - whether they would have been naturally creative without the aberrant behaviour is of course the big question. I'm reminded of something a good friend once said "everybody's got a novel in them, the problem is it's usually crap".

I want to add to however that I suspect there is a correlation between grief and creative impulses.
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cabbynum
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« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2017, 11:00:56 PM »

Nick, i just wanted to say I love everything about this post and thuroughly enjoyed the music. Listened to it a few times while doing some work today. I also appreciate the nod to my controversial post. I am very glad you posted this and will post a longer more in depth response later when i have more time! But you are a gem!
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Bach Prelude and fugue no.4 Book 1
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