I recall the final question posed to me in my Graduate Oral Exam: “Where do you see yourself as a composer in the long history of composers before you?” (Or, something to that effect.)
Honestly, I hated the question. At that point in my life, I’d been composing music professionally for fifteen years, and — though I was indeed still trying to figure that out — I ultimately didn’t care about finding an answer. I was (and still am) a proponent of such ideas as this one, expressed by Andy Warhol:
“Don’t think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art.”
Now, having been a bonafide Friendly Neighborhood Composer for twenty-four years, I still don’t know how to categorize myself! And I actually consider that a good thing overall.
Lately, though, I have noticed a trend in my writing habits. I have decided to dub it “Stream-of-Consciousness Composition.”