While studying this Carcassi étude — and analyzing as many version as possible in aid of that — I realized that classical music is like wine. They’re both based on a central theme or taste, and it’s the subtle differences between the interpretation of each performer or wine maker that make them unique and interesting. That’s why you need to listen to a lot classical music (or drink a lot of wine) to develop a palate. I bet two different musicians (or even the same musician at two different points in their career) playing the same piece would sound the same to some people for the same reason that two different merlots would taste the same to others.
This is supposed to be played allegro, but I’ve yet to hear a version above 105 bpm that didn’t feel rushed to me, so I prefer to play it andante. Luckily, I enjoy classical music, and I can tell the time I’ve invested in developing that foundation translates over to non-classical songs, not only in the extra finger precision but in practicing techniques too.
I’m still using electric strings, which I’ve had on longer than any other set, cause I love how crisp and brassy the tone is throughout the range. For a piece like this where the melody switches between bass and treble, that becomes really important.
That little furrow was there because you weren’t. That’s why you never saw it, of course. You must think I hate you cause it was the only thing I couldn’t help her with myself. But I could never hate you. You gave her what she wanted. In the end, that’s all I really wanted too.
I knew it was serious when I saw your umbrella under her bed, back when she hid those kinds of things for my sake. You never realized she only took it as an excuse to see you again (not because she was particularly scared of getting her merino socks wet), the same way you never realized how easy it all was for you. That was a sign that you were the right one. I knew it before she did.
If only there was a bit of mystery left in you. Instead, I had you pegged by the second night, and all I can tell people is that you’re a nice guy, when I want to say you’re an artist, a lover, a fighter, a worthy rival, a slayer of insecurities, a breaker of barriers, a testament to testosterone, a hero among men. She deserves more than the painfully pedestrian life you’ve given her, but I know she’s had enough of heartbreak to think that normal is hard enough to come by. And so I’ve learned that a person’s happiness is all that matters, not the dreams you have for them. I guess it’s hard to give up those dreams when you’re part of them yourself.
I want to say I’m leaving for some noble reason of great importance, but it’s really because there’s nothing left for me in this little town. I used to believe I could escape; eventually I realized you can’t outrun your memories. Now I’m just trying to figure out where I belong. She was all I knew for so long, and now that life is gone.
And so I must tread carefully with new lovers; it’s impossible for me to tell my story without that part of my past. That’s why I wonder what she told you about me, about us. About losing feeling in her face and letters you wouldn’t know how to write. If she intentionally left anything out, or whether our time was even worth mentioning. But the past is still the past, and that’s the only reason I can write a letter now to the man who saved her without ever knowing it.
Heather G made reservations for us (and Sergey) at the Back Lane Café last week. We hadn’t seen each other since the summer, before they were homeless and I started recovering. Last time I saw her, she left me with a takeout Hintonburger and a meditation audiobook that she hoped would help me feel better. It was so sweet that she didn’t understand at all what I was going through, but tried so hard to help with very thoughtful gifts anyway.
This time, she wouldn’t let me pay, even though she treated me last time as well, and she said please with such heartfelt intent that I knew she’d be hurt if I didn’t give her the honour. We’d been playing phone tag for weeks up to that point, and between their careers and camping, they could only spare themselves for a meal sans tea or dessert. It made me realize how precious their time is nowadays, and the fact that they made the time to see me meant so much more than the two hours we spent catching up over a great food and conversation.
Poached shrimp salad, with Niagara nectarines, bibb lettuce (for it’s tender texture), endive, lime, and hazelnut dressing. An appetizer good enough for a main.
Continue reading “reduction”…
I still have fond memories of the fall. It’s when the light is at it’s most neutral, not warmed by the summer sun or cooled by it’s reflection on the snow. The time of long showers, kitties being even more affectionate, and girls always finding the right spot to nestle under your neck.
On particularly bright, chilly days, with all the leaves a flat lemon-yellow, I can hardly take it all in.
We are on this planet to move our cats directly in the path of a sunbeam every 15 minutes.
The sunbeams form a celestial calendar across my floor, slowly creeping along as they threaten to warp the wood in my instruments, reminding me that I haven’t spent a winter in this room yet. I can only hope the memories will be better this time around.
These days, I still dream of a nylon-stringed beauty, with warm tones and crisp bass close to the saddle. I wonder what she’ll feel like under my fingers, mahogany or rosewood, satin or glossy. It’s a dream that never seems far away cause I know it’ll happen some day, so I try to cherish the anticipation.
I’ve been feeling particularly nostalgic. When the right song comes on, I’m taken to the time in my life when it was the only thing I played for a week straight. I used to write so much, but lately I hardly have anything to say it all. That’s why I’m addicted to the feeling of feeling, searching for inspiration, using my dreams to keep me alive.
Singhouse Studios is a voice and performance school for people of all ages, and one night every year the students perform in a big show. This year, the show — titled Sparkle — was celebrity-themed, complete with a melange of hits from the last five decades, a red carpet runway for all the stars, and even Ottawa’s local pop heartthrob, Alex Lacasse.
Music by Five Stripe Studios. Adrian and I worked closely to make sure the music had the right kind of playful energy to focus on the school’s main demographic.
I was asked to create a promotional video for the studio, so I followed the performers to tell the story of their day, from the backstage to the main stage. I felt it was as important to see all the preparation as much as the performances themselves, which is why I included footage of warm-up routines, practice rituals, and dress rehearsals. I love to see the focus so many of the young performers have, and much of that comes out before they even step into the spotlight.