yesterday, while i sketched moments on various keyboards, both pipe organ and piano, d sketched on paper. and he somehow captured how i was feeling. the lifting of eyes to the universe, the imploring of the heart. his scribblings on paper, my scribblings on keys. two artists, expressing.
the telling of the story – through music, through painting or drawing – does not demand complexity. sometimes it aches for simplicity. a pure line of melody, unadorned. a few fast pen-lines, unfinessed. the telling of the tale, honestly, pitch by pitch. not the skirting of the story, the fancified version sung by an vocal acrobat. instead, the straight-up carole-king-richard-diebenkorn-versions, sung note for note, painted line by brushed line, color by color. intense in their clean simplicity.
the more complicated things get, the more i list toward simple. less is more. my piano left hand has always been a virtual non-stop accompanist to my right hand, arpeggiating ad nauseum. in recent years, i’ve asked it to calm down, to allow room for the delivery of the right hand, to allow breath, to allow lift. together, they have given space for the real scribblings, the true expression.
if you have ever been to a taize service, you will have experienced the wisdom and power of repeated simplicity, a line of music that will take you to your knees. nothing advanced or embellished.
if you have ever held a child’s drawing in your hand, you will have experienced the wisdom and power of innocence, art that will take you to your knees. nothing advanced or embellished.
it’s the simple line. both ways.