An Encounter Between the French Philosopher Jacques Derrida and American Saxophonist / Composer Ornette Coleman (June 1997)
The founder of ‘deconstructionism’ speaks to the father of ‘free jazz’ about the role that language plays within their respective professions as philosopher and musician. In this gem of an interview Ornette Coleman and Jacques Derrida chat about the complex relationship between improvisation and composition.
If a piece of music requires a framework with rules and structure then how could it be said to be improvised? Both agree that ‘repetition’ is key to improvisation although it complicates the meaning of improvisation. Derrida does a remarkable job eliciting connections between their ideas as well as their shared experiences of racism and ‘otherness’.