Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Note by note

Sorry, September, I seem to have completely missed you on here!

I mentioned in passing a while back that I had a milestone birthday this August. But instead of throwing a big party, I decided that I wanted to learn something new. And that's where the guitar comes in.

I have always - always - loved the guitar. For me, it carries some great memories: being in the folk group at church in high school, madrigal group in college, and oh yeah, there are these guys who have been known to inspire me.

Luckily for me, we had an extra guitar at my house, along with loads of music books, not to mention someone who already teaches music living here. He got me all set up with brand new strings, tuned everything up, made me a copy of a chord chart, and let me have at it. It took a long time to start building up calluses, and there was a time where I thought I would never be able to hold down a B minor chord.

I've been practicing every day for 15 to 30 minutes, sometimes with the kids, sometimes longer if I can do it after they go to bed. It's become a real family thing - the kids sing with me sometimes, and about once a week I go to Paul and demand to know something in particular. Last week I made him write down strumming patterns for me, and taught them to the kids so that they could chant them to me while I played. He gave me an "A" for my progress and I got a sticker for my hard work. ;)

I would apologize for the lack of artwork lately on the site, except that I have been coming to the dawning realization that art is art. When I transpose a song into a key that's in my range/abilities, I'm being creative. When I sit down at the piano to work out an alternate arrangement, that's art too. And when I figure out chords by ear and I have no idea what they're really called in real life but they sound right, that's creativity.


Shelley Noble said...

Absolutely! Right on! Art is life lived. Spirit Enters. Art Exits. Period. End of story. I'm with you on that.

www.chicellarose.wordpress.com said...

I thought I might like to learn to play the cello last year as I have always loved the sound. Reading music wasn't hard as I used to play the flute. However the bow ..holding the bow...was hard! and making the strings sing their proper tune ...hard. And trying to fit it the practice time was even harder. So I reluctantly decided that for now, cello playing would remain elusive. Horses, dogs, kids, grandkids, gardens have a much stronger pull on me.

Leonie said...

I love your newfound realisation that art is all encompassing! I'd never really stopped to think about it, but reading your post, I sat here nodding. Trying a new recipe, a new Pilates pose, a new skill? It's all creativity, isn't it?

...and I'm thinking now about taking up an instrument. Thank you!