Jake’s tone, phrasing, and ability to build tension and land it so elegantly took this track much farther than I thought it would go. His opening phrase at 0:43, laid way back on the end of the beat and contrasting beautifully against the frantically paced drums, is such an incredible statement. And Jake’s solo gave me so many additional ideas, like using some additional harmony to frame what he was playing and chopping up some of his phrases to set up the new section — directions I wouldn’t have pursued had I not reached out to him to collaborate.
As we just saw, one musical principle that has reverberated throughout time and across continents and cultures is theme and variation. To revisit that classic example, here’s the theme from Beethoven’s “Symphony No. 5” and the first variation of it, displayed in Ableton Live’s piano roll. The simple shifting of the notes downward is very effective.