Trees of Reference

Ornette Coleman’s tune “Sleep Talking” takes a nod from the opening melody of Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring.

But wait…

Stravinsky’s opening melody takes a nod from a tune from a folk anthology by Anton Juszkiewicz. And Juszkiewicz surely took the melody from someone who took the melody from an older generation and so on…

The degrees of reference (or theft) aren’t unfortunate (lest someone copies someone else’s work!), they’re beautiful.

One melody forms a knotted family tree, stretching from the roots of Russia to the branches of African American free jazz.

There are more trees to find, to climb, and to nurture to help it keep growing. And hell, maybe we can plant trees of our own!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: