Now and then I reflect upon the relationship I have between writing original tunes (lead sheet format) and ensemble pieces. I like to write for ensembles. However, it seems to me that my most creative work is in writing original tunes. When I'm working on an ensemble score I already know what it will sound like, depending upon the amount of freedom in the piece (see my blog Beyond Notation). Whereas, with an original tune the performing musicians in a small group can take the music anywhere. I love the excitement of the unknown and seeing where the music can go.