Reproduzo aqui (no original em inglês) um excerto da entrevista de Steve Coleman publicada no site do movimento M-BASE.
Coleman toca num ponto-chave no que respeita á filosofia da improvisação: a procura de liberdade criativa através da limitação do campo de exploração musical.
Uma frase de Coleman dita neste excerto resume a questão: "If you give somebody the freedom to play what they want they will tend to do the same thing over and over."
Esta afirmação faz-me pensar o que diz o pianista Stefano Bollani sobre o seu próprio trabalho de improvisador: “ Even when I improvise, I love to build cages for myself so the musician Bollani has to try to escape Bollani, the composer”.
A entrevista de Steve Coleman pode ser lida na integra aqui .
"Steve Coleman : ..... I started talking to him (Dave Holland) about doing something in about '78 or '79, but we didn't actually get together until about '81. When we started playing together we had these different ideas about what we liked. We would sit down and listen to records. Of course, we had differences. They were sometimes just a matter of taste, many times cultural differences, you know, he grew up in England and I grew up in Chicago. But there were a lot of other things that were obviously common, otherwise we would not have sat down and talked. Okay, so when it comes to making music, he's telling me why he wants to play with me, I'm telling him why I might be interested in playing with him, you know. One of the biggest differences, to put it that way, was our idea about structure. For him, like I say, he just came out of this free-form and he found it really enjoyable to not give any parameters at all. And I said, "Well, Dave, when you don't give any parameters, that's like giving parameters." And he said, "Well, what do you mean by that? I have the freedom to play what I want!" I said, "If you give somebody the freedom to play what they want they will tend to do the same thing over and over." He didn't buy this, in the beginning. I said, "Let somebody do whatever they want over and over, I mean complete freedom, and they will fall into habits and will do the same thing over and over." Actual freedom to me is choices.
Entrevistador: That's a pretty restrictive idea of freedom, considering that it's not you who will decide what you can choose from.
S.C.: First of all, there is no such thing as freedom. We're human beings, we're creatures of habit. But if we have more choices, the illusion of freedom is greater than if we have less choice. The average musician, if you tell him to do what he wants, or she wants, they're not going to develop certain skills because they will just fall into what's easiest for them to do. If you force them out of certain habits, they will be forced to develop certain skills to deal with those things. ....
Entrevistador: You mean like a liberating constraint?
S.C.: Yeah, but "liberating" is misleading. We're never going be free. Forget that. But the thing about structure is that you don't get fooled thinking that you're doing whatever you want to do. To me, Coltrane's life is the perfect example of that. He used structure to get to a variety. The word I would prefer to use is not freedom but variety. So you can see that he was playing a certain way and he stumbled on certain kinds of structural things around the time he was doing that Giant Steps stuff, which he felt he needed to investigate. He definitely investigated them to a ridiculous degree. He did it on standards, he did it on originals. He got a lot of response from that. A lot of response from inside the music community itself. Even from the musicians in his band. "