Wednesday 08 December 1999

The Team are in and

The Team are in, and Hooter Johnson is back to repair the third verse of "ProzaKC Blues". Trey is leaving to buy a new CD burner & Pat is thrumming his acoustic set in the garage. "Let There Be Light" has vibrated the basement several times this morning already.

"Complexity And Creativity In Organizations" by Ralph D. Stacey (Berrett-Koehler 1996), completed this morning, is the closest I've found in managerial/systems studies to accurately describe King Crimson's "way of doing things" on a functional level. The language is academic but, for anyone willing, this is one way of describing the MO of this strange beast Crim. Chapter Ten is also one way of figuring out if Fripp is "the bandleader" or not. David Wilkins might be interested. Or not.

"C&CIO" is an application of the science of complexity & psychodynamic research to management & organisation studies. This continues the subject matter of my reading while here in Nashville, but relates it to an area of my own experience - 30 years of King Crimson. Consequently, it's not so much surprise as reinforcement. The surprise is that management studies have taken so long to get to this. Here are a few quotes from Prof. Stacey:

"The system produces patterns in behaviour; it consists of a network of agents driven by iterative nonlinear feedback to produce unknowable outcomes that have pattern. Complex adaptive systems have an inherent order that is simply waiting to be unfolded through the experience of the system, but no one can know what that order will be until, in fact, it does unfold in real time. In certain conditions, left to self-organise in what looks like a mess with no apparent order, agents interacting in a system can produce, not anarchy, but creative new outcomes that none of them ever dreamed of" (p.13).

Anyone agree with the view that King Crimson looks like a mess with no apparent order but produces creative new outcomes that no-one ever dreamed of? One (for Orn) which follows the above:

"The price for (this) freedom is an inability to know the final destination or to be in control of the journey".

"The process of extraordinary management ? is a creatively destructive one that may ultimately lead to replacement of at least some parts of the current dominant schema" (p.195).

"Potential and effective complexity together amount to a form of bounded instability" (p.285/6).

The emphasis I'd place here is on the word "bounded" and the word I'd use is "contained".

Prof. Stacey places a lot of attention on the shadow side of organisation, his usage not, I think, in the Jungian sense but closer in meaning to "unofficial". He refers to a strategy I deliberately employed within Polydor while in New York during the "Exposure" period (1978-79): deal with the shadow side of the organisation to bypass the formal part of Polydor.

Hooter is continuing to croak, and hoot, next door.

Toyah and the company of Peter Pan are teching at this moment in Canterbury. The show opens on Thursday and they are currently a day behind, she says. As Peter, Toyah flies about the stage. I hope the operators don't fly her into walls, as they did in Wimbledon in 1993. She'd come home with bruises from her latest encounter with the window frame. Well, that's quite close to the window. Actually, you don't get much closer than that. When we spoke this (my just up) morning Toyah was so excited that I'd be back this Saturday. "Oh luvvy I don't leave until December 17th.". Wrong Saturday. Ouch.

Paul Richards has called. It's looking likely that The CGT & RF will play in Japan during March 2000. Maybe Soundscapes are returning to an uncaring world!

We didn't manage to satisfactorily nail the form of "Power Rock Song" although we developed a new bridge which stomps, but the song's character is eluding us.

So, then off to Loco Lupe's to celebrate the birthday of Mrs. Elvis Goodbread with her and Graham Elvis. The power of the Monster Margarita fluctuates from visit to visit. Tonight's had less kick than on some occasions, which was fine with me. Then back to Basement Belew and personal practising of "Larks' V".