How to scan Spotify codes and use the sonic triggers on the Jam Cards

Spotify Codes offer a brand new way for users to share and discover the amazing content on Spotify. It’s as easy as taking a picture.

As you might have noticed, the Jam Cards have such a Spotify code on the bottom left corner.

How to play the sonic trigger of a Music Thinking Jam Card:

  1. Open the Spotify app on your phone or tablet
  2. Go to ‘search’.
  3. Click on the ‘camera icon’ on the right side of the ‘search field’ at the top of the screen.
  4. Scan the code.
  5. Listen and enjoy.
  6. Tip: Close your eyes and use headphones.

 

What are the Music Thinking Jam Cards

An inspirational card set for changemakers, pattern recognisers, innovators, transformers and natural collaborators. The Jam Cards consist of 38 inspiration cards and six cue cards. All inspiration cards have a keyword, a visual and a sonic trigger, a trigger question, an inspirational quote, and six cues that connect with the Music Thinking Framework. You can use the cards from a strategic point of view, knowing what you want or need and a serendipity approach open to everything that will happen.

 

Order the Music Thinking Jam Cards

You can order the jam cards via your local bookstore (worldwide) and have a nice chat with the people there and try the cards right away, or just buy them directly at BIS Publishers.

Yes, you can also find them at Amazon.com, Amazon.de, and Bol.com

 

Creativity, or how can we waltz with complexity?

There are many books written about creativity and creativity is not just a skill or a magic wand that helps us when we are desperately looking for solutions for big problems. There are many ways of being creative, and this can be in small and simple but also in complicated or even complex situations.

There is a big difference between complicated and complex. For the former, it might help to reduce the complicated elements in smaller simpler units (like it is done in agile development), for the latter that is not possible. It needs a different way of creativity.

The Jam Card

The ‘Creativity’ Jam Card – Music Thinking Jam Cards

There is no simple solution to a complex problem. Instead of looking for the next simple quick fix for something that is nearby, we should think about how to understand the complexity, what level of complexity do we experience and how is the complexity changing. This means complexity is not a problem to be solved but a system you can only understand when you are a part of the system and try to change it. This needs creativity in many dimensions and many senses. It’s like dancing the waltz with a complex system, having fun in mutual changing development instead of analyzing and trying to fix it. So have fun with complexity, embrace the paradox.

The picture

  This is a snapshot I did with my iPhone on a Vintage Guitar Show in the Netherlands. Besides many guitars from decent to crazy, there are also many accessories to tune, maintain or enhance your guitar, amp or yourself. One of these is the Gizmotron. The Gizmotron, is an effects device for the electric guitar. It was invented in 1969 and patented by the English rock musicians Kevin Godley and Lol Creme in 1975, whilst they were members of the British rock group 10cc. Taped or permanently attached to the body of an instrument, the Gizmotron uses small, motor-driven plastic/rubber wheels to make the strings vibrate, yielding resonant, synthesizer-like sounds from each string. Plagued with design and manufacturing problems, the Gizmotron did not live up to expectations and was a commercial failure. In this regard, it became a collector’s item.

 

The quote

Creativity is more than just being different. Anybody can play weird – that’s easy. What’s hard is to be as simple as Bach. Making the simple complicated is commonplace – making the complicated simple, awesomely simple – that’s creativity.

This is a great quote from Charlie Mingus, a great musician and bass player. He understands that creativity is not just a single trick (being weird or different) but part of a bigger system and Johann Sebastian Bach is a great example. It also shows that Mingus is looking far more than his Jazz experience to the area of classical or baroque music. That Mingus was an inventive innovator with a broad view not only in music can be seen in the inspirational links below, he was also a cat lover.

The music

The Brandenburg Concertos by Johann Sebastian Bach (BWV 1046–1051, original title: Six Concerts à plusieurs instruments) are a collection of six instrumental works presented by Bach to Christian Ludwig, Margrave of Brandenburg-Schwedt in 1721. They are widely regarded as some of the best orchestral compositions of the Baroque era. Bach used the “widest spectrum of orchestral instruments … in daring combinations,” as Christoph Wolff has commented.

“Every one of the six concertos set a precedent in scoring, and every one was to remain without parallel.” Heinrich Besseler has noted that the overall forces required (leaving aside the first concerto, which was rewritten for a special occasion) tally exactly with the 17 players Bach had at his disposal in Köthen. source: wikipedia

Here is a side story: when my daughters were young, I made for them mixtapes with the most different musical pieces. From classical to Punk, Jazz, Rock or Pop to instrumental, German, Italian and English songs. Among others, there was also the excerpt of the Brandenburgische Konzerte you hear above. My eldest daughter walked daily with a cassette recorder through our apartment. One day when we had guests and were sitting on the table, she entered the room with her recorder, put it on the table and was explaining: ‘and this is Bach’, then she left the room and an astonishing group of people thinking about the well educated and musically talented little girl.

 

The cues

SCORE, JAMMIN’ and REMIX are three cues that connect with complexity. They live in the solution space and have the potential to quickly prototype and iterate new possibilities. JAMMIN” with the power to invent, listen and create, SCORE with the power of visualising the outcome or documenting the hypothesis and REMIX as the master of shipping, of creating something of value to use or perform. See here: how the cues connect with the Music Thinking Framework.

Some inspirational links:

John Maeda the laws of simplicity
Gizmotron 2.0
Charles Mingus Cat Toilet Training Program

Music Thinking Jam Cards

 An inspirational card set for change makers, pattern recognisers, innovators, transformers and natural collaborators. The Jam Cards consist of 38 inspiration cards and six cue cards. All inspiration cards have a keyword, a visual and a sonic trigger, a trigger question, an inspirational quote, and six cues that connect with the Music Thinking Framework. You can use the cards from a strategic point of view, knowing what you want or need and a serendipity approach open to everything that will happen. ‘Music Thinking’ lets people work and play together in a new way with inspirations from the rich world of music.

Order the Music Thinking Jam Cards.
You can order the jam cards via your local bookstore (worldwide) and have a nice chat with the people there and try the cards right away, or just buy them directly at BIS Publishers. Yes, you can also find them at Amazon.com, Amazon.de, and Bol.com

How do we get into action and avoid the fear of making mistakes

Everybody knows this or at least was in a situation where you got stuck into something. Especially when we are in a new position or new environment we sometimes feel limited and have the feeling to avoid making missteps or mistakes. Or when the possibilities, limitations, rules, or urgent things to do give us an overload of data and as a matter of fact no energy to move.

The Activity Card

The ‘Activity’ Jam Card – Music Thinking Jam Cards

Sometimes action speaks louder then words and the basic idea is to keep playing instead of stopping to talk. There are two lines of thoughts here. One is about getting in action without too much holdback from anything and the other is how can we develop if we don’t make mistakes. An exercise to the former could be to focus on ‘what is not the problem’ or asking yourself or your team ‘what is the emerging energy or strength in the room where you all can work with’. To the latter, just take any action even if it feels like a mistake and see it as a pivot point to change directions or a learning experience to get better.

The picture

This is a picture from the streets of Riga. I made this picture while being in Riga for a presentation on the Design Week. While walking to the streets I heard from a distance the nice sounds of the street musician playing on the tuba, when I finally saw the player I recognized that the instrument completely covered his face. He was not only visually united with his instrument but also playing without any restrictions. This picture for me is also a symbol that when you are prepared and ready you are able without any further planning to get into action. I believe that every one of us has a certain level of readiness to make the next steps. As an organisation, we have to find out what our level of action is. One possibility to find out is to learn an instrument and play (Ever tried the Ukulele?). There are many examples were playing together and not talking can lead to better outcomes then logical thinking and arguing.

 

The quote

Do not fear mistakes. There are none.

Miles Davis is one of the biggest inspirations for me. Most of the musicians were talking about Miles as the ‘best listener who ever led a band’, he heard what everybody else was playing and with his voice and the ability to show new possibilities he was the glue to make it sound like a whole band. His instructions were famous in being vague, showing the right direction and also leaving enough freedom for own interpretation. So if you don’t believe that there are any mistakes everything is possible.

 

The music

This is a take-out from one of the most famous recording sessions of the album Kind Of Blue from 1959. We hear the quintet playing. We hear the start of Freddie Freeloader and some noise right before the tape starts, ‘take 1, no title’ so the title was not yet decided. After a few seconds, the recording stopped and we hear Miles ‘It is too fast’, but also the recording engineer that reminds Miles not to move away from the microphone. Freddie Freeloader is one of the most played jazz standards in the world and it is very charming to hear how this great recording started – with a mistake.

The cues

This card is connected with JAMMIN’, the power to take what you have and bring it to the table or rehearsal room. It also contains the unlearning factor, the question what do we have to unlearn if we are stuck. EMPATHY helps us to see that making mistakes makes us human and that it’s not a big deal to make mistakes or commit that you have made some and encourage others to try and get into action. This is also the precondition of AGILITY because you can never be agile when there is a lot holding you back while performing. So REMIX is the performance of the best you can do now. See Music Thinking Framework for an explanation of the cues.

Some inspirational links:

Some Music Thinking on Branding and Miles Davis
Miles Davis.com
Quality, innovation, collaboration, inspiration. Have a look into 1959

 

Music Thinking Jam Cards

An inspirational card set for change makers, pattern recognisers, innovators, transformers and natural collaborators. The Jam Cards consist of 38 inspiration cards and six cue cards. All inspiration cards have a keyword, a visual and a sonic trigger, a trigger question, an inspirational quote, and six cues that connect with the Music Thinking Framework. You can use the cards from a strategic point of view, knowing what you want or need and a serendipity approach open for everything that will happen. ‘Music Thinking’ lets people work and play together in a new way with inspirations from the rich world of music.

Order the Music Thinking Jam Cards.
You can order the jam cards via your local bookstore (worldwide) and have a nice chat with the people there and try the cards right away, or just buy them directly at BIS Publishers.
Yes, you can also find them at Amazon.com, Amazon.de, and Bol.com

Thinking about our tools instead of our goals

Vision, mission, goals, targets, why, how and what are inevitable words in the business vocabulary. We spend time and money to find out who we are, how we can grow our business and the way that leads us to big hairy audacious goals. And from time to time we change this because we encounter new possibilities or constraints. But what about the things that help us shape this bright future? What about the means, the tools, the instruments we are using to reach what we want?

With tools I mean a vast field of artefacts that could be for example the Stradivarius of a violinist, the Selmer Mark VI Saxophone of a jazz player, the self-made tools of a Japanese joiner, your favourite whiteboard marker, your MacBook Pro, or the online tool you use for customer journey mapping. So, how does this resonate with you?

Are we using the right tools? And are we using them in the right way? Are there useful tools we don’t know, old or new? What are tools anyway?

The Tools Card

The ‘Tools’ Jam Card – Music Thinking Jam Card

In what way might tools influence our thinking, our behaviour and eventually our success? Think about the tools, instruments and tooling you use every day as a person and/or a company. What does this say about you? How do you maintain the tools? How do you choose them? Which one do you throw away after use? And which are a companion through your (business) life? You might use these questions and the ‘Tools Card’ as a discussion starter with your colleagues, family members or just with yourself.

The picture

One of the advantages of a musician is the time you can spend between rehearsals, meet-ups and concerts. It is the quality time when you can de-focus, explore the neighbourhood, kill some hours and be open for serendipity. One of these moments brought me to a market in the Russian city of Krasnodar, it was at the beginning of the 90s while travelling with the improvisation group Raum-Musik for Saxophone. In the open, there was a huge flea market, with very diverse offerings. It was the first time that I realised that there is a demand for single shoes. So if your left shoe is broken or lost, you don’t buy a pair of new ones but just a replacement. This was not only one stand that offered single items, but it was also a characteristic pattern of singularity. Looking for patterns I was on the outlook to find unseen things.

This finally brought me to the stand where the offering was a set of second-hand tools like screwdrivers, Phillips screwdrivers, drills, a computer ventilator, electro-motor and a pile of records. Wait a minute, a pile of records? I tried to make connections between all the items and they made more or less sense as most of them were tools. So I thought about the relationship with the pile of vinyl records. How could a record, or better music be a tool to fix something? It was this moment that sent me on the track of Music Thinking and how music could be of any help or use.

The quote

I see myself as a tool maker, as someone who manufactures hammers and nails, without knowing what those hammers and nails will build.

Thinking about tools and music, I eventually came across the quote of Hans Reichel. He was a musician, inventor, luthier and designer. He is the inventor of the daxophone and the dax typeface. The commonalities are the shape. I am fascinated by his inventions and design, and especially I like that he used the same principle to design an instrument (the dax you are holding in your hand to change the pitch) and the basic shape of the typeface. For me, this is music thinking par excellence.

The music

In Harmony with Henry the Horse on Lower Lurum by Hans Reichel. I encountered this music many years ago and fell in love with the sound, but the real shock or nice surprise came when I saw the beautiful tongues he invented and the way how the instrument is played. I had the chance to later make a daxophone of my own in a workshop led by inventor and musician Yuri Landman.


 

 

The cues

There are six cues in the music thinking framework. My first thought is that if we want to do some JAMMIN’, we need something, a tool. And you can only work in an agile way when you know your instruments and how to use them, even more, when you have to work together with others.
Note: There is no direct line between JAMMIN’ and AGILITY on the framework, it needs PERSONALITY (the right tool according to why and how we operate) and SCORE the right thing that fits to what makes sense (JAMMIN’ and EMPATHY).

 

Special thing

The Tool Card is unique in the Jam Card set in the way that this is the only card that uses a different typeface then all the other cards. All the cards use Helvetica, but the Tools card is using the typeface Dax. This card is a homage to Hans Reichel, and his versatility as luthier, musician and font designer.

 

 

Music Thinking Jam Cards

An inspirational card set for change makers, pattern recognisers, innovators, transformers and natural collaborators. The Jam Cards consist of 38 inspiration cards and six cue cards. All inspiration cards have a keyword, a visual and a sonic trigger, a trigger question, an inspirational quote, and six cues that connect with the Music Thinking Framework. You can use the cards from a strategic point of view, knowing what you want or need and a serendipity approach open to everything that will happen. ‘Music Thinking’ lets people work and play together in a new way with inspirations from the rich world of music.

Order the Music Thinking Jam Cards.
You can order the jam cards via your local bookstore (worldwide) and have a nice chat with the people there and try the cards right away, or just buy them directly at BIS Publishers.
Yes, you can also find them at Amazon.com, Amazon.de, and Bol.com