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Origins of originality

Let’s clarify one thing.

Nothing is new.

Everything that is created comes from a trajectory of cultural and technological iterations. And yes, there are interesting ways to do this.

If you bring together two ideas from far reaching places and you make it work – that’s fresh. That’s great work. But it’s not original. It’s a new perspective.

Elvis was the first white guy to embrace the beauty of Afro-American music and package it as Rockabilly (50’s) It was fresh at the time, but not original.

The people that called it original were just blind to the musical legacy he borrowed from.

Being original, really, is about respecting the origins of where your ideas come from, then taking it somewhere interesting.

Originality is about respect.

P.s. If you make something that is conceptually so divorced from any pre-existing culture that it really is truly original, there’s a good chance you’ll struggle to make anyone feel anything (because conceptually, it’ll be interpreted as noise).

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