My personal scrapbook, repository of media digests, and ongoing chronicle of the interesting, absurd, and totally mundane things that I find, do, think and talk about in my life. Please note: All writing is done by me unless cited otherwise (in which case, links, quotations, and citations will be ascribed to their corresponding sources). Please do not redistribute or cite original material (no reblogs/copying) without my express permission.
‘Be Wrong as Fast as You Can’ →

I don’t know if anyone ever told me, “Those who can’t write, edit,” or if I made that up on my own, but that little aphorism haunted me. Meanwhile, my grandiose writing projects were all going nowhere for the same tedious reason. The minute I tried to commit them to paper, or otherwise turn them into something tangible, my imagination coughed and sputtered like the cheap Renault convertible my girlfriend drove in college. I’d write a bit of dialogue using that miraculous software that automatically formats it into a screenplay for you, and I’d be instantly paralyzed from the neck up. Here was incontrovertible evidence that I wasn’t half as good as I imagined myself to be. The voices I heard so clearly and powerfully in my head became inert and alien on the page. I was surprised by how mortally embarrassed you can be by writing something nobody else will ever read. Even looking back over those one- sentence descriptions of TV ideas in the first paragraph of this essay, I am humbled by how inadequately they convey the vividness they had as I conjured them. It’s like hearing a recording of my own voice. That can’t be how I sound. Oh, but it is.

I could never forge through this. My confidence always collapsed under the weight of my withering self-criticism. I couldn’t bear the awfulness and keep going. Even as I’m writing this essay, I have to stop myself from scrolling back to previous parts and banging my forehead against the keyboard as I see how short I’ve fallen of my expectations. My mind goes uncontrollably to whether it might be better to scrap the whole thing and write a different Riff — like, I’ve got a few stray ideas in my notebook here about the glassy office tower they’re building next door to where I live and how it obliterates what’s left of the spirit of Greenwich Village. Or about this ’80s band called Talk Talk that started out making bland pop hits like Duran Duran but then rejected fame and made a couple of crazy, weird, beautiful records until mysteriously vanishing. That Riff will practically write itself, I just know it.

A promiscuous imagination like this is dangerous for writers. As an editor, I can see that clearly. I know that the next brilliant brainstorm is never going to be the one that will just write itself, any more than the last one did. Ideas, in a sense, are overrated. Of course, you need good ones, but at this point in our supersaturated culture, precious few are so novel that nobody else has ever thought of them before. It’s really about where you take the idea, and how committed you are to solving the endless problems that come up in the execution. 

(Source: NY Times)

— 1 year ago


Matt:isn't it ironic?
Matt:how the best times we had when we were all in school
Matt:and how all of us yearned to get the hell out
Matt:little did we realize that life never gets easier
Matt:it really never does
Matt:it only gets harder each and every year
Matt:and we need to embrace that or we become totally neurotic and helpless
Matt:every year there is a new host of challenges to contend with
Matt:new people to deal with, new people to meet, new skills to learn
Matt:and the older we get, the harder it gets to keep up
Matt:and there's this unrelenting pressure to continually keep up, but there's only so much you can keep up with -- want to stay on top of the news, want to stay on top of books, movies, tv shows, video games, music, art, want to stay in shape (physical and mental, not to mention emotional and spiritual)
Matt:want to stay financially stable
Matt:want to travel
Matt:there's this endless list of wants
Matt:it's incredible how in this day and age, where technology is so rampant in first world countries, including the one we live in, we still find a shortage of time to do the things we actually enjoy, and spend it with people we love
Matt:everything is transitory, evanescent
Matt:feelings, thoughts, friends, relationships, skills, attitudes, social circles, media, information...
— 1 year ago

Rest in peace, Austin Peralta.

Gone too soon… I admired Austin’s spirit and passion since the first time I heard him play alongside Chick Corea, Hiromi Uehara, and Hank Jones at the 2006 Tokyo Jazz Festival at the age of 16. He was incredible, and there was no doubt in my mind that he would have a long, enduring career as a jazz musician.

As a major fan, the news of Austin’s untimely death came as a total shock to me. I had been listening to Mantra and Endless Planets on repeat the past few days, and to suddenly find out last night at 1:30 AM PST that he would no longer be around was difficult to register. At just 22 years old, Austin was someone I looked up to as a model of artistic excellence and youthful exuberance, an embodiment of the joys of being fully immersed in one’s passion. Listening to his music fills me with an energy only matched by watching him perform, and doing both is such a special, uplifting experience. Few things are as inspiring and enjoyable as witnessing someone so in love with their craft, and Austin was one of those rare gems. I wish I had the pleasure of meeting him in person in LA. 

Austin, your legacy lives on in all of us who loved and appreciated your enthusiasm for life, your remarkable talent, and your dedication to musical ingenuity. Thank you for your inspiration; you will be remembered.

Austin Peralta Live @ Tokyo Jazz (by VirgilDonatiBand2011)

— 1 year ago
#austin peralta 

Much respect for this guy. This man knows what he’s talking about.

— 2 years ago

Kapustin Concert Etude Op. 40 No. 1 — first take (by matticulate)

Here’s a last minute recording of me playing this difficult piece by Nikolai Kapustin before I leave for the airport!  

Pardon the mistakes and background noise! 

— 2 years ago

5.12.2012 - Matt Law Piano Mixed Improvisation (by matticulate)

Messing around the keys while on camera.

— 2 years ago

4.25.2012 - Ravel - Le Tombeau de Couperin Prelude (by matticulate)

— 2 years ago