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Jazz Metaphysics

We never really know how things will turn out. We’d like to think we do, but it’s really not so. In fact, even the captains of industry and the cone heads of academia don’t know what will happen just 5 years in the future.

This can be good news or bad news. Kinda depends on what kind of a person you are: an optimist, or perhaps not so much.

I’m a jazz musician. I play the piano. Except for a few distractions along the way, it’s how I’ve made my living and it’s been the thing I return to again and again – every single day. For more than five decades.

If you don’t know, being an improvising musician is a combination of study and practice of physical and mental patterns, combined with an ability to lose oneself in the moment when creation is allowed to occur. It’s in these moments that the miracle happens – when we transcend the patterns we learned and practiced. Something else happens that is unexplainable.

It’s called magic.

We jazz players are not unique. There are others that do similar things. Basketball players and emergency doctors come to mind. They practice and study their art, and then – in the moment – make choices that others would probably not make. They reach into the unknown and are right more often than they’re wrong.

This site and podcast are dedicated to this real-world magic that happens every day.

I’ve been thinking about all of this for many, many years, and I’m going to start sharing some of my thoughts with you – via this podcast. Podcasts are probably the coolest idea that technology has provided in recent years. They don’t bug you or interrupt your flow, and can be enjoyed anytime you like – or not.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy the conversation, and I invite you to subscribe. It’s available through all the usual channels, or right on this site under the RSS feed.

Thanks for tuning in.

Ben Dowling, March 1, 2019