What make a great musician?

You can have two individuals, with similar musical technical ability, play the same exact notes on a guitar and receive completely different reaction from the audience. You can also have musicians who train day in and day out and become extremely good at technically manipulating their instrument but when you hear them play, they hardly evoke any emotional reaction in the audience. On the other hand, you have the other kind of musicians, who may either be technically good or not, but their delivery always triggers a palpable emotional reaction in their audience. So what is the element that makes the difference?

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Replies

  • for guitar, its all about facial expressions! :D
  • For real?

    Chris Alpiar said:
    for guitar, its all about facial expressions! :D
    What make a great musician?
    You can have two individuals, with similar musical technical ability, play the same exact notes on a guitar and receive completely different reaction…
  • Hi Kenneth-

    I believe its the ability to be inside of, and actually be part of the music, as opposed to being outside of it, and simply performing or playing the notes..

    A kind of merging and being one with the music, and letting it play you...

    Bob Morabito
  • Sounds right to me------- THANKS!!

    Bob Morabito said:
    Hi Kenneth-

    I believe its the ability to be inside of, and actually be part of the music, as opposed to being outside of it, and simply performing or playing the notes..

    A kind of merging and being one with the music, and letting it play you...

    Bob Morabito
    What make a great musician?
    You can have two individuals, with similar musical technical ability, play the same exact notes on a guitar and receive completely different reaction…
  • For me it means complete technical mastery plus interpretive genius.
  • Perhaps knowing greatness in a musician is directly dependent on each one's innate sense of musicality. I use to believe most people don't know squat about music they just know whether they like it or don't. Iv'e since come to believe that people generally know great when they hear it. On the other hand, too often people listen with their eyes instead of their ears and so it goes.
  • I definitely subscribe to Bobs comment as I've had that feeling many times when performing. Hard to describe, but it feels like you're not actually you doing it, more like your channelling energy or a force. Sort of an auto-pilot sensation where your normal characteristics and mannerisms have been put in a limbo or trance-like state allowing this connection to happen. I think it has alot to do with the intent of the musician, their state of mind and also how the piece affects them. A very interesting subject!
  • My experience performing is usually one of figuratively disappearing. All thought stops and I am totally enveloped in a world of sound. For me when the thinking stops the music starts------

    Adam Weldon said:
    I definitely subscribe to Bobs comment as I've had that feeling many times when performing. Hard to describe, but it feels like you're not actually you doing it, more like your channelling energy or a force. Sort of an auto-pilot sensation where your normal characteristics and mannerisms have been put in a limbo or trance-like state allowing this connection to happen. I think it has alot to do with the intent of the musician, their state of mind and also how the piece affects them. A very interesting subject!
    What make a great musician?
    You can have two individuals, with similar musical technical ability, play the same exact notes on a guitar and receive completely different reaction…
  • Imagination is a vital component.
  • Perhaps additionally, I think it's possible that people amassed in an audience will, if only to a minor extent, ( OFTEN TO A MAJOR EXTENT)succumb to "mob behavior," thereby occasionally (or habitually) cheering a performance which has no great virtue over another one. THANKS THOMAS!!

    Thomas Green said:
    It's a good question.

    You could superficially address it by posing a hypothesis.

    If we imagine a blind test, using only a recording (no live performance), if one was generally found to be the preferred performance, then we would have to conclude that there is something different about the way the preferred one is played.

    Alternatively, if we did the same test and our results were that there was generally no great preference, and yet we knew that in a live performance one of the performers was preferred, then we would have to conclude it had something to do with their stage presence.

    From this little thought experiment, it seems that the pivotal factors are the subtleties of the delivery and/or the performer's stage presence.

    Perhaps additionally, I think it's possible that people amassed in an audience will, if only to a minor extent, succumb to "mob behavior," thereby occasionally (or habitually) cheering a performance which has no great virtue over another one.
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