Pianist Jeremy Denk visited NPR's studios to play and reflect upon Bach's Goldberg Variations. You can listen to the interview here — it's fascinating. Here's an excerpt:
One of the most beautiful thing about the Goldbergs is that Bach uses it as a canvas in which to draw this seemingly infinite world of possibility. He grabs from everybody; he basically does a mashup. He does things in the style of the French overture, in the style of different dances; he does lamenting — from the smallest to the largest, from the happiest to the saddest.
I see a strong philosophical link here to Tom Waits and Ice Cube. So much of the creatvity that fuels innovation is about connecting the dots between disparate sources of inspiration. It's about sampling from here, from there, and synthesizing those pieces to create a new, innovative whole. When you really examine them, many breakthroughs in the worlds of products, services, economics, and politics look a lot like what is happening with musical innovation, where it's about assorted bits and pieces being combined to create something which feels totally new at the time but which with time and perspective can be traced back to its component sources.
Principle 2: See and hear with the mind of a child
Principle 6: Live life at the intersection
Principle 8: Most new ideas aren't
Principle 19: Have a point of view