One of my great idols, Betty Carter, completed an album entitled, “It’s Not About the Melody”.  This was later in her career, and indeed, Betty became a master at turning the melody inside out, deconstructing it into its purest elements.  However, I learned a lot about melody from Betty’s earlier recordings.  In fact, Betty was a master of the melody, and when she sang, the melody was clear and pure.  I have always been a fool for the melody, and even in an abstract tune, one searches for the melody to tie the whole thing together while listening.  The melody is actually the architecture of a song, the coat rack on which the notes are hung.  Compare realistic painting to abstract painting.  If a painter has no grasp of the elements of composition, his abstract painting will have no real meaning.  Picasso was a great abstract painter because he understood composition and was a master at deconstructing its elements. The same is true when making music.

Leave a comment:


Like Robin on Facebook!

Facebook --