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Songwriting and Romanticism

Valentine's Day brings to mind all things romantic. Somehow on that day I landed on a Wikipedia page about Romanticism, and was pleasantly surprised to realise it bears many a resemblance to the process of songwriting, as follows:

A strong emotion is the authentic source of the artistic experience. Spontaneity is a desirable characteristic harnessing the power of the imagination to envision and to escape. This spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings can include confrontation with the sublime quality of untamed nature. Of primary importance is the free expression of the feelings of the artist. The artist's feeling is law. 

In order to truly express these feelings, the content of the art must come from the imagination of the artist, with as little interference as possible from artificial rules dictating what a work should consist of. The influence of models from other works would impede the creator's own imagination; originality is absolutely essential. 

Natural laws govern these matters, so the imagination at least of a good creative artist would freely and unconsciously follow through artistic inspiration if left alone to do so. 

The concept of ...the artist who is able to produce his own original work through this process of creation from nothingness, is key to Romanticism and to be derivative would be the worst sin. This idea is often called ‘romantic originality’.

[adapted from Wikipedia notes, see under Basic characteristics at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romanticism]

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