Saturday, August 16, 2014

Practice, Practice, Practice

Sometimes I wish we were all slightly more automated, just push a button and download the information into our mental hard-drive -- kind of like they did in the Matrix movies… “I know Kung-fu!”  But nooooo, you have to keep working at it, constantly.  Practice, practice, practice.  At my age sometimes it feels like it’s not as much about getting better than it is just not losing what you’ve already got.  The Law of Diminishing Returns keeps trying to raise its ugly head, but I’m playing Wack-a-Mole with that mother.  In truth, it’s actually a very stimulating exercise practicing that mental discipline to play music every day, to improve on what you did before, to learn a new tune, to expand on an existing arrangement, to write a new song.  Hell, who needs Lumosity?

I am more and more coming to understand the magnitude of that old saying, “…luck is preparation meeting opportunity.  The more you’re prepared, the luckier you get.”  It only took me (insert no. here) years to figure that out.  Hmm.

Well anyway, the songs are coming along quite well, and my dedication to the process is starting to pay off.  The big focus at the moment is staying in the NOW while I play, and not allowing stray thoughts to creep in and distract my mental focus in the moment.  The truth is, we as Soul essence, are not our thoughts.  We can claim a thought as much as we want but the cosmic stream of consciousness is connected to us all, or more accurately, we are connected to It.  So my practice is as much about mental discipline as it is about learning new music.  Funny how everything you do has a spiritual significance, a life lesson attached.  That’s one thing I love about life, there’s always a plus element; you never stop learning (re-learning).  In truth, the knowledge has always been there, we’re just re-membering it.  Well, got one more song to work on, so I’m out for now.  Until next time, you decide what you want to think next.  Later.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

New Beginnings

It's a rainy Tuesday afternoon and I'm in my studio working on some music.  I'm preparing for some up and coming gigs in D.C. (Adams Morgan area) in October, and am so jazzed to be finally getting back out there performing solo.  I've been playing music pretty regularly for years now with different ensembles (agency bands, studio sessions and gun-for-hire work), but It's been many years since I've put myself out there solo; a simultaneously thrilling and horrifying endeavor to be sure.  But as they say "No guts, no glory".  It's been burning inside me for awhile now, and now is the time to move.

I want my performances to speak to people, not just your regular cookie-cutter pablum so many piano vocalists put out there for the public, but something unique and special.  I figure, if I'm going to bust my hump learning all these songs, I might as well choose compositions that mean something -- something to me as well as to the listener. So I'm meticulously selecting cover songs that resonate, that touch the mind and heart; not preachy, but in a way that provokes feeling and emotion, and hopefully makes you feel better when you leave than when you came.  I'm also including some original tunes that have always been special to me including some select tracks from my "Be Still" CD (2006), as well as some new songs that have flowed through me in recent years.

My life has always been mission focused, and I'm at a chapter in it where I need my energy and effort to resonate light, in whatever small way it can.  So, I guess this blog will serve as an outlet and focus to the ongoing process of singing my truth, shining my light.   I hope I'll be able to share what is important to me, and hopefully provide insight and inspiration to others through my music and this blog.  It's what I've dedicated my life to all these years, and what I will continue to do until I'm done with this place.

I write this also on the day after the death of comic genius and entertainer, Robin Williams.  This loss really hit me in my gut, in a way that I didn't expect.  This wonderful Soul touched so many, and his legacy will live on long after his physical shell is gone.  I dedicate this first blog to him, and will use his inspiration as a stepping stone.

Welcome to my journey.