Today I had to record playing with those who play bluegrass/traditional/folk type of music for the recording class I am in. It was quite interesting because I haven't improvised with those who play this style of music. We listened over the tracks and each part individually. While listening back and even while playing I noticed I wasn't comfortable improvising in this style because it wasn't jazz. I sounded jazzy at some parts and realized I was playing too many notes for it to fit with this style of music. It was definitely an experience.
So instead of expressing myself as me while playing I was playing the program that existed in me as jazz. It was actually quite simple. I had to improvise in the key of D and I was thinking of playing altered scales and half step up and down but in this style of music it wouldn't fit. This style didn't need playing anything altered, or whole tone, or diminshed. Just playing in the key of D with a flat 7 and/or the blues would have fitted a lot better than what I played. I thought I had to show off how I can play "outside" the changes since I am the only jazz major in the class. All the others are traditional music majors. So I tried to prove myself in trying to play "outside" to try and show my knowledge and information of how to play on chord changes, lol. Quite egotistical. I was thinking of what to play instead of just playing.
While hearing what I played back I realize I was 'trying' to force my ideas on the style of music that was being played instead of simply playing along in the style. I realize that I don't know much about this style of music but I didn't have to try and only play what I know based on knowledge and information.