Difficulty Propulsion

Day 173 Week 26 Q2 Friday, June 21, 2024

Have you ever been propelled forward by difficulty? Of course, you have. Sometimes, to rescue ourselves from danger, we have all had to move very quickly when facing something potentially harmful. Have you ever had to work harder because of a deadline? Have you ever had to dream up a new method of earning money when an unexpected expense came calling? Have you ever had to edit someone out of your life?

All of us have “experienced difficulty propulsion”. We are propelled forward when what is happening, where we are, is unsustainable. We have all heard the phrase necessity is the mother of invention. Danger can propel us to make significant changes in short periods.

But what about when there is no danger, crisis, or something clearly to be avoided? What if the issue or potential stimulus is of a much smaller magnitude? What if there is just difficulty, not danger, crisis, or impending peril? 

The presence of difficulty can be an even more helpful form of propulsion because it is less urgent, and you can be more calm in your assessment of the situation and its appropriate response. Can you manage your life where simply addressing the difficulties that arise tends to reduce the number of dangerous crises you will be exposed to in the future? Combating chaos and reducing entropy can fall into the category. So, we can create something better in preproduction, as operating in a post-production situation is far more complex and expensive.

Can you train yourself to be alert to difficulties that can be used to propel you forward? One example is if you’re trying to solve a complicated problem and really want to just get to the answer and then do but have not documented your approach that led to your success ultimately. Perhaps it is worth spending some time when you are in a penultimate state, where you can determine that you’re just about to cross the threshold of solving a problem and can take a step back to document. How did you get to the state instead of rushing ahead and crossing the finish line? Crossing the finish line does not take complete advantage of the difficulty.

You can even look forward to encountering difficulty, knowing that if you address it as it occurs, the total amount of work later will be significantly less. One example is to clean up the dishes after dinner instead of tomorrow morning. When the food has dried out, it sticks to the dishes a lot more firmly. Many difficulties are like this. The more they are ignored, the more difficult they become. See if it is possible to pay forward and if you have the energy and the clarity to know what to do.

Another example I have heard but not yet verified is a member of the medical establishment that said if you eat 30% less, you will live 30% longer. Is this true for most of us? Is it also true that running a solution is much more helpful than running away from a problem? In both cases, you have to run, but in one of them, you’re simply avoiding the difficulty, and in the other, you are using the difficulty developmentally to get to a better place.

Some difficulties’ impact can be exaggerated. This is why good judgment is required in dealing with difficulty.

Today’s the Day

Day 172 Week 26 Q2 Thursday, June 20, 2024

Every day, when we get up, we have the opportunity to create something entirely new. Most of us do not take that opportunity because we are still consumed with what we think we had to do yesterday, but what if we said today is the first day of the rest of your life, and you’re going to change it? And change it right now. For me, the thing I can do that will have the most effect today is to record an album. I will already be in the television studio today recording my television show, and since the show is about harvesting infinity, why not come home and truly harvest infinity?

I have all of the inputs I need. It can be as simple as a solo piano album or as complex as having a lot of other parts. Why not simply record the solo piano album first with a single microphone and then worry about substitutions and alternatives and maybe even end up with two albums instead of one? This is what I’m going to do today from 4 to 10. I’m going to spend six hours recording an album. Will there be some signal processing involved later on to change the tone? Well, I think I should record some of these tunes with my 88-key weighted Arturia keyboard and some of them with my 1926 Mason Hamlin Grand Piano. 

It is time to use Melodyne to form a bridge between the world of audio files and the world of midi. If this sounds like I am talking to myself instead of to you, I guess I am. Don’t you think that all writers, when they are writing, are not only writing to an external audience but also themselves? Does that bother you? Do you feel like you should be hearing a different conversation than the internal one that a writer has with themselves? Maybe it’s interesting to listen to the conversations that writers have with themselves about being musicians.

In any case, some people spend one or two years working on an album pretty consistently in the studio, with a group of people spending money and spending time. Other people spend a decade or two working on an album here and there. But there is another group of people who can simply go to a studio and spend an hour recording an album. Classical musicians can do it. Jazz musicians can do it, and other forms of musicians who are touring and playing a couple hundred shows a year should be able to walk into a studio and knock out an album as quickly as they could knock out a show. Don’t they?

Well, I’m going to record an album today and find out. I am neither a touring musician nor a professional classical or jazz musician, but I am an experienced composer and multi-instrumentalist. I have the desire to have an album, and that’s enough to sit down and do it. There are some skills involved that I have and will be acquiring in post-production.

I have already recorded albums in the past, but I never completely recorded one by myself. My others were either in a studio with recording engineers or in live clubs, always with other musicians. Now it is time to do a solo album and really do it solo, as opposed to what people call Solo albums, where they really are the person masterminding it, but they’re also playing with other combinations of musicians, engineers, and producers. For this album, I intend to compose every piece, play every instrument, record every track, edit the mix, and master every tune. Fortunately, I have already composed enough material and practiced and performed it to be close enough for Jazz.

Spiral Development

Day 171 Week 26 Q2 Wednesday, June 19, 2024

None of us are on a single path. We are all trying to make progress in multiple dimensions. Many of these dimensions impact each other. One way to look at an integrated growth path is to consider it to be a spiral type of development. Well, that means, if there were half a dozen things that you needed to improve, that if you went around a circle at 60° increments, you could stop and address each one of the six things before advancing upward in a spiral manner so that when you went around the circle the second time everything had risen a level.

Each time you visited a particular dimension, it would have risen, and its level would have developed. It is also possible to decline in a spiral manner, and I suppose it’s even possible to keep going around the circle without getting better or worse at anything, although this seems unlikely because the slope of the development curve is more a function of attitude and psyche than anything else.

If our spirits are rising, the spiral will likely progress upward, and if our spirits fall, we will likely decline. If we are levelheaded and never feel better or worse, I suppose we could just be on the same route forever and never improve, decrease, or grow.

The slope of the curve is everything because the spiral is the natural way to be integrated. You can’t only worry about your career and neglect your family. You also cannot only think about your career and your family but ignore your own mental and physical health. This means if you have hobbies or interests beyond that of your work and family, you have to get a slice of the pie. I suppose you can selfishly just pursue your interest and not worry about work or family, and that would not lead to a very good place because if you are not going around the circle of activities, you are probably falling off the spiral in that you are involved in an unbalanced developmental approach.

If there are too many stops on your spiral as you go around the circle, it is going to take a very long time to get anywhere. How many things can you get your arms around in your life at the same time? Probably a minimum of three and a maximum of six. You can probably bundle some of these things like a car and a home. If you can bundle your hobbies, interests, work, profession, and compensation, you are really styling.

You might want to take the time to stop when you have completed a full 360° circle of the spiral before you attempt to go around a second time. You have to reset your balance and preserve your equilibrium to optimize spiral development.

Options Management 

Day 170 Week 26 Q2 Tuesday, June 18, 2024

There are many kinds of options all of us have. When you’re in the startup world, you generally think about stock options, that is, after you are already funded. Before being funded, the stock isn’t worth much anyway and you often issue stock grants instead of options. At least that used to be the case 20 years ago I don’t know how it works today. 

But 10 AM is talking about a different kind of options than stock. You might even refer to these kinds of options as having an opportunity cost. If we choose one option instead of a different one, we are paying an opportunity cost. If you choose to live in one house, then you have to choose to not live in other houses unless you can afford to have several. Most of us can’t afford more than one or two at least with the people I hang with. I know there are others who can afford many. something more affordable than houses are cars. And again, most people only have one or two, although there are some people who have a pile of them. Again, they are not the people I hang out with. Although there was an anomalous time in life for me when I did own five cars, This didn’t really make sense except for the fact that I was living in two houses on two coasts with my wife, so two people with two cars and you’re already up to four because you’re in two houses.  again, this was a complete anomaly and now we are down to 3, 1 car each and a spare that is mostly a seasonal convertible. and by the way, did I mention that two of these cars are 10 years old and the other one is almost 30 years old so we are not talking about big dollars here. However, the time and money it takes to keep cars running, registered, and inspected is substantial. In fact, that is substantial enough to make us not want to have any more cars than this.

OK, so most people do not have two houses and most people do not have two cars because it doesn’t make very much sense. so now we come to categories that are more tricky. How many guitars does the average guitar player own? Well, if they are a hobbyist, one or two and maybe three. If they are semi-professional, they may have a few more maybe five. Because they will be of different types. Some will be nylon string, some will be acoustic, some will be electric, some will be for Jazz, and some will be for Rock. it is not irrational for a semi-professional musician to have experimented with a few different types of instruments and ended up with a handful, and then there are two other categories, the professionals and the collectors, both of which may have much larger numbers of instruments than a handful.

But back to options management and opportunity costs. Keeping all of your guitars in good shape is much less expensive than keeping automobiles in shape. And since guitars don’t have to be registered and inspected, there are fewer external people and agencies involved. But there still is the issue that if you are playing one of them, then you’re not playing others of them, and how many can you play at one time anyway? Well, if it is a jam session, you can probably only play one, and if it is a gig, you might be able to play two, and if you get up to the level where there is a concert, perhaps as many as three. But more than that, and you are really pushing it.

Since instruments can vary in terms of their tactile attributes, it is quite possible to be much more used to the instruments that you play a lot than the ones you don’t, but you may still want to have the options of additional choices because of the larger context within which you are operating. It may depend on who you were playing with. Or how many people you were playing with or the kinds of venues you were playing in. Or if you are recording. There are many reasons to have a pile of options, and some of them have to do with the fact that your life is changing every day. You may be playing different styles of music at different points in time, depending on how you feel. And you definitely do not feel the same way on Sunday morning as you feel on Thursday night or Monday afternoon. These material references of houses, cars and guitars or metaphors for the other options we have in life. If you live long enough, you will probably have more than one place that you lived, more than one person you have lived with, and more than one car and guitar that you have driven.

How do you manage your options? Do you even measure and manage your options? Or is this an unconscious stance that you participate in daily, responding to the vicissitudes of life? It is not always better to have too many options. I mean, I really prefer having a single wife. And a single house and a single car but how do you make sense of having 600 apps on all of your computers? It is nonsensical even though they do not take up much space. They do take up space in your mind and if you want to get that space back, then you have to simplify. And as entropy is always marching forward to create chaos, you have to simplify every day or else you end up with mental clutter, which is even more paralyzing than physical clutter.. In short, you have to manage your options! Or they will end up managing you.

The Entropy War

Day 169 Week 26 Q2 Monday, June 17, 2024

I’m sure you’ve noticed by now that your house never cleans itself. Neither does your laboratory, your studio, or anything else. We are all involved in a war with increasing chaos, and the only way we don’t get overwhelmed entirely is by investing conscious energy to combat entropy. it is quite possible if you have been using computers for two or three decades to have more email addresses than you can deal with, more cloud accounts, more phone numbers, and more mailing addresses. And then, of course, there are the passwords, none of which are able to be memorized any longer if they are to be secure, and many of which require two-factor authentication. it may feel good to keep hanging around all of your old accounts and your old paperwork, but unless you clean it out periodically, you will grind to a halt as surely as your house will grind to a halt if you never throw anything away.

Even if digital things don’t take up any space physically, they still take up quite a bit of space mentally, and they are very difficult to sort because they are, in a way, invisible. Sometimes, I think it might be easier to get a new computer and a new phone and not transfer anything from the old one and just start fresh with a new life. Maybe you can keep a digital copy of all of that stuff archived somewhere for review in case you need to look something up, but for day-to-day operations, how about a clean slate? I tried this this morning, and it felt so terrific, psychologically, to not have to weigh between the metaphorical equivalent of piles of stuff.

In fact, I have a friend who, every couple of years, gets a new computer and gets rid of his old one now that they have become inexpensive enough to be an expense instead of amortized. He also uses almost all distribution software exclusively, that is, the software that comes bundled on his machine. I tried the experiment this morning by wiping the hard drive of a laptop completely clear and using the minimal number of apps possible, and boy, did that feel good.

We have all iterated numerous times on new systems, but sometimes, instead of reworking the old code, you should just throw it away and write a program from scratch. Sometimes, code becomes unmendable, and sometimes, houses or cars reach the end of their lives and need to be discarded. Sure, you can keep on trying to salvage something forever, but at some point in time, spending more time maintaining it than is reasonable. This can become true of relationships as well, not that I am trying to end the end of my key relationship relationships, as my wife and I edited all of the people out of our lives who didn’t make sense to us quite a while ago.

Sometimes, you just have to clean the house physically, metaphorically, psychologically, and every other way you can imagine. You might find you can run a lot faster once you take the weights off your ankles. Just like we can become overweight if we only gain 1 pound a year, it still becomes 50 pounds in 50 years, and that’s a lot of extra weight to carry around. You have to deal with entropy every single day at the end of every single session so it doesn’t become too heavy to move.

Declare war on entropy and recapture your life.

Bidirectional Acoustical Isolation

Day 168 Week 26 Q2 Sunday, June 16, 2024

So what exactly does bidirectional acoustical isolation mean, and why doesn’t it matter? First, let’s get a nomenclature issue out of the way. The two different words, acoustical and acoustic, can often be used interchangeably. They are both adjectives that refer to the transmission of Sound. Now, let’s take on bidirectional, which refers to sound transmission in both directions.

Apart from the fact that I am an electroacoustical engineer and therefore somewhat attached to things relating to sound, there is a more down-to-earth reason why I am bringing up this phrase: bidirectional acoustical isolation.

Sometimes, people are driven to live in acoustically isolated spaces. They get tired of living in the noise of the city or an apartment building and decide they want to be acoustically isolated to better hear themselves think without all of the external interruptions that a high population density situation gives birth to. Then, there are people who live in rural areas and cannot see their neighbors. They occasionally hear a car on the road, even if it is a couple thousand feet away from where they live. In both cases, sound has a significant impact on people. In one case, the sounds of nature wash over you, and in the other case, the sounds of civilization wash over you. However, neither of these is the primary reason I am writing this. I am writing it more from the point of view of being a musician and a composer.

Let’s get the 800-pound elephant out in full view in the room. Actually, I don’t think there are 800-pound elephants. I think they are 800-pound gorillas, and even that’s a pretty light one; elephants considerably more than gorillas do. Similarly, grand pianos weigh a lot more than upright pianos, upright pianos weigh a lot more than guitars, and guitars weigh a lot more than flutes. So, what is all of this babbling about? Well, most composers in the world know how to play the piano. They may not consider themselves Pianists, but there’s no question that the piano is the most powerful instrument if you are a composer because it is able to address Melody, Harmony, and Rhythm all at the same time and in a very visually easy-to-understand manner. What does this have to do with isolation?

Well, pianos are loud! I’m not going to give you the numbers in decibels, but a piano was considerably louder than a guitar unless, of course, the guitar is electric. The bottom line is that if you manage to find a place where you are washed over by the sounds of nature, not the sounds of the city or the sounds of the city where you have neighbors nearby, the pianos are a problem. I have lived almost my entire life in houses, not apartments because I like playing the piano. And I’m sensitive to disturbing the peace and quiet of those around me.

All of this sounds relatively straightforward if a person lives by themselves, but if they live with others, even in the low-density countryside, where there are not too many people, the people that you are surrounded by are the ones you are the closest to, and therefore the most sensitive to. This means if you are any kind of a sensitive person, you are not going to play the piano in the middle of the night, preventing those around you from sleeping, even if it is only one person if only one person is sleeping where you have your piano safe to assume that person matters a lot to you and is probably your significant other or child.

This is one of the reasons why I was one of the pioneers in creating digital pianos: They had both volume controls and headphone jacks, both of which served the acoustical isolation part of being a piano owner and player. OK, so we have talked about two different directions of sound. The desire not to disturb others and the desire not to be disturbed by others are both pretty important if you would like to be in a state of rapport with the rest of the world. But what has caused me to write this posting today is a variant of the theme of being disturbed and disturbing, and this relates to singing.

As a pretty decent piano player, I have not been overly concerned about disturbing people with low-quality music, just with intrusive sounds. In general, when I lived in a condominium complex, my neighbors encouraged me to leave the sliding doors open so they could listen. But now, later in life, becoming a singer also creates a large set of sonic questions, some of which differ tremendously for me from dealing with the complexity of holding around an 800-pound piano for the last 40 years. It’s a good thing I didn’t have to move it too often.

The human voice, in some, is the opposite of a piano. It can play only one note at a time instead of Mini. And although my voice is loud when I don’t have stage bright, it is nowhere near as loud as a grand piano. Here is where things get psychological quickly. In order to feel free to sing, so that I could learn how to sing without exposing others to the low quality of being on the way to being able to provide satisfactory, if not entertaining and inspiring vocalizations., we get to deal all over again with the possibility of stage fright, but my psyche cannot impact my piano playing nearly as much as my vocalization, which is why I find myself for the first time in my life in my eighth decade being excited about the bidirectional acoustical isolation that living in the country provides.

This is a fancy way of saying I can sing with abandon when no one is home and no one can hear me, and because of that, I am not disturbed by outside noises, and others are not disturbed by me. Because of this, I am able to make nonlinear progress, or at least I can convince myself that I am because there’s no one out there to comment on it. But as in all creative processes, this is where they start by ignoring the rest of the world. And bidirectionally, hoping that the rest of the world ignores you too because the context for creativity usually requires gestation and gestation benefits from being private.

Hence today’s preoccupation with bidirectional acoustical isolation.

Context is Everything

Day 167 Week 25 Q2 Saturday, June 15, 2024

Seriously, the way we view our lives has a profound impact on how we live. If I assume that I am a very high-performance person capable of moving at incredible speeds to get incredible things done, I am going to have a very different life than if I have low self-esteem and depression.

By the way, it does help if you have a track record of being the person you want to be and accomplishing at the level that you genuinely believe is consistent with who you are and your potential. Fortunately for me, I have multiple pieces of evidence that I am who I think I am, even if I have not been that person recently. Perhaps I have legitimate excuses, or perhaps I don’t. It really doesn’t matter. There is no point in dwelling upon how you got here. There is a greater urgency to recognize where you have gotten to. You need to be able to answer the questions of who you are. What should you be doing, and what would provide value great enough for you to consider this path legitimate? 

If my context is a mental model of abundance, and if I have a track record of having achieved nonlinear results through the application of abnormally high levels of energy, then there’s nothing to stop me from dreaming and from living that dream. What is wonderful about this particular situation is the combination of several prior lives into a more highly integrated set of behaviors and activities that support high values for me and the world’s goals.

Do you presume to know what the world’s goals are? Well, I guess I do because, in the past, I have accurately predicted and acted upon these goals, even if the timeframe was delayed—not the timeframe of me accomplishing my goals, but the timetable of the world is ready for them. Progress always takes longer than you expected when you are trying to watch the pot boil. But if you were able to integrate over a longer time constant and zoom out to not be so consumed with the momentary progress, then you can view the progress over a longer time.

Fortunately, I have been transforming my dreams into behaviors to habituate. The actions I have determined are necessary to get where I want to get. And where is that? That is relatively simple to say. I have determined that I want to be a Concertizing Keynoter as a way to deliver high-value messages to high-value audiences in order to be highly compensated. The integration of music into the speech will make the talks much more exciting and make me much more differentiated from other speakers. This is a really good combination. This is being paid well for being who you really are and want to be. Now, that is a context worth writing about. I guess I just did.

Musical Foreground Harvesting

Day 166 Week 25 Q2 Friday, June 14, 2024

There are many ways to divide people. They have been called the haves and have-nots, a division often associated with wealth. But in the world of music, there’s a unique divide, a distinct ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ scenario.

Let’s break it down: most musicians are in the background, providing the soundtrack to various settings like restaurants, bars, farmers markets, or gallery openings. In these cases, the audience hasn’t specifically come to listen to them unless it’s a performance space like a nightclub.

But here’s the catch: being a foreground musician, whether an instrumental star or a lead vocalist, is a rare and coveted position. It’s like finding a needle in a haystack, with only a few and far between, probably less than one in a thousand, achieving this status.

A lead singer is definitely in the foreground and not the background, and that makes all the difference between being the reason why people have shown up or not. Because even if the musicians are wonderful, most human beings relate to the human voice more powerfully. This can be because it is most often singing words, and words are more literal than the reusable abstraction that instrumental music is, which makes them more accessible.

It takes courage to put yourself out in front, as in the foreground, because then you cannot hide. As a vocalist, one would assume that this implies singing perfectly in tune and not forgetting the words, but what if the vocalist were more of a scat singer unless concerned with lyrics? Then, it opens up an infinite amount of pieces of music to be played, just as it does for an improvising jazz musician.

I think I am in the process of crossing this threshold right now. It does appear that I have a foreground voice. It will not work for singing harmony, and it will not work for the background. Furthermore, it doesn’t make much sense for it to be supported by other musicians when I am such a powerful musician, even though this does tend to happen, especially if you’re a young, pretty woman. But if I am old and not so cute, man, then it’s a harder sell.

The person I have found it the hardest to sell to has been myself. Perhaps growing up with a lifetime of being told you can’t sing and you shouldn’t be a musician or an entrepreneur has contributed to this.

I can understand why I wasn’t a marvelously successful lead singer, entrepreneur, or manager. but now the time has come that I have to become all of these things even though I am 71 years old.

You Are What You Think Including AI

Day 165 Week 25 Q2 Thursday, June 13, 2024

Let’s face it. Our unconscious minds are aware of a great deal more than our conscious minds are. Using artificial intelligence integrated into many of our mental processes has the potential to increase our awareness of things that we are only partially aware of, such as what we unconsciously know.

As we augment our intellectual capabilities using software tools, one benefit is the capture of stream-of-consciousness foot processes, which are normally associated with the unconscious.

The time we spend organizing our thoughts by writing them down and tagging them and sorting limit to files and backing them up, seems to be increasing every day. I think I have more than 1000 notes and more than 1000 Facebook friends and more than 1000 LinkedIn friends, or at least somewhere in the neighborhood. I vaguely know about these 3000 things after all, I created them, but there is no way that I can remember all of the details. I also have several hundred passwords stored in my password managers to permit access to any number of accounts and applications. It may sound crazy, but I have 350 applications on my Macintosh and 250 applications on my mobile devices. And since I have multiple computers and multiple mobile devices because it is hard to throw these things away or to trade them or to sell them, there is an overwhelming number of things to keep track of.

Artificial intelligence is really good at this sort of thing, only if you can remember to enter everything in the same place so you only have to search in one place. But the larger and more exciting impact is that of being able to dictate instead of type or record and transcribe my music instead of writing it down because the very act of stopping to write it down, not only slows me down, but also kicks me out of the stream of conscious mode I have been operating in which inevitably was much faster than getting kicked out of flow and changing gears and climbing my way back.

Since we have far more impact on our lives through our mental processes, then we can imagine, what happens when our mental processes get amplified? For example, how we feel about stress determines whether it has a positive or negative impact upon us. And if we feel healthy and feel capable of dealing with what’s in front of us, then we are far more likely to be healthy and to be able to deal with what’s in front of us. And AI can help us in all of these situations.

So remember, we are what we think and the stories we tell ourselves and these stories now include the stories that AI tell us too in response to our prompts so be aware what you are asking for and what you were getting back and how you can integrate it, perhaps bridging your unconscious unconscious streams of consciousness of creativity.

Note Level Editing: Part 3: Discovery

Day 164 Week 25 Q2 Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Here, we expand beyond rescues, corrections, and conventional sound combinations into instrument sound design. I do not believe that ever before, there existed the equivalent of a spectral and formant modification tool within at the most musical context of all, actual music. To be able to alter and combine the combination of reharmonization and orchestration with instrument design, tempo, and pitch manipulation is incredible. The ultimate composer multi-instrumentalist laboratory.    

Yes, I have not tried this yet either, but as a musical acoustician, musician, composer, and digital signal processing electrical engineer who has been involved with these types of technologies for fifty years, I am completely confident these will work. Now, making available a sufficient amount of time to pull it all together is another story. But this final key component does make it much more worthwhile to try.

The combination of rescue, expiration, and discovery does indeed create a much more substantial bridge to cross between math and music than MIDI was able to for the simple reason that playing a MIDI controller is so much less inspiring than a fine acoustical musical instrument where the formant regions, resonances, and sympathetic vibrations can guide a sensitive listener forward in their real-time compositional process – also called improvising. 

Make no mistake about it: most of the great composers who were all pianists (which is most of them) must have been great improvisers as well. The stream of conscious creativity, uninterrupted by having to switch modes from artist-creator to engineer-technician, is potentially life-changing for me.

Just because a person has a lot fo skills embedded within multiple modes of operation does not mean there is no penalty for gear-switching between these roles. I have been able to switch modes between performer and composer without losing the artistic creative thread. But when I try to be a musician and a recording engineer, inevitably, the stream-of-consciousness music flow is broken. This is why musicians go into studios to have recording engineers record them; even if they have the skill set, we can not transcend the mindset switching. 

Yes, you can be a musician and an engineer, just not so well at the same time. The outcome suffers both technically and artistically but especially emotionally, which interferes more with the art side of things.  Is being a recording engineer or a sound designer also a creative artistic process? Of course, they are, but they are a different creative process than those of composing in real-time, aka improvising.  

I know many people who have tried to be both at the same time and come away dissatisfied – it is not just me. To my mind and ear, the best exemplar of a tool in this category by a long shot is called Melodyne Studio and is made by a company called Ceremony.