H is for Hack the Music
To hack is to cut away; to clear.
Sometimes clearing away in order to experience what has been in front of you or alongside you, but nonetheless remained hidden, requires a bit of hacking. A bit of clearing. Oddly, clearing can also be achieved by being in a place that is full. It is inside a fullness that clarity is achieved.
There is a story Jonah Lehrer tells in Imagine about David Byrne and it reminded me of John Cage's understanding about traffic, music, and silence and how being full can lead to insight, inspiration. I think it has something to do with triggering the right hemisphere. Anyway, here's Lehrer writing about David Byrne:
While Byrne celebrates the pleasures of biking—“ The wind in your face, the exercise, the relaxation”— he bikes mostly for another reason: it lets him listen to the city. He describes cycling as a form of urban eavesdropping, a way to overhear the hum of the streets. “When you’re stuck in a car, it’s like you’re in a bubble,” Byrne says. “You can’t hear anything that’s happening outside. But when you’re on a bike, you can tap into the atmosphere. You can feel people doing their thing. It’s a kind of connection.” When I met Byrne outside his office loft in SoHo, on a cobblestone street filled with fancy clothing boutiques, he was carrying a muffin and a helmet; his shock of white hair was perfectly vertical. He led me inside, up three flights of stairs, and down a grim, industrial hallway. (The building used to be a sweatshop.) It was a warm day, and the windows of his studio were wide open— the sound of the street seeped in. “I like it a little noisy,” Byrne says. “It reminds me where I am.”from David Byrne's Bicycle Diaries.
In this interview with John Cage, he helps us to uncover the relationship between traffic and silence.
Lehrer, Jonah (2012-03-19). Imagine: How Creativity Works (Kindle Locations 2431-2434). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Kindle Edition.
Note: In this series of post during the month of April, I am participating in the A to Z blogging challenge, with each day focusing on a letter. In order to bring some cohesion to this process--releasing the imagination is the focus of each post.