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REVIEW: Derek Bailey and the Story of Free Improvisation

Scott Thompson

Published: 2005-09-01

In this review by Scott Thompson, Ben Watson's biography of Derek Bailey is said to carry a singularity of vision which perhaps misses some of the other "stories" of free improvisation; nevertheless, despite this criticism, Thompson also lauds Watson's investigation of the Sheffield-based Joseph Holbrook Trio and Derek Bailey's relationship with Gavin Bryars.

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Improvisation is, simply put, being and living this very moment. No one can hide in music, and improvising in music is to be truly in this very moment and being completely yourself, with all your qualities and faults. It is probably the most honest state for a human being to be in.

– John McLaughlin in an interview with Daniel Fischlin.