Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Up In Smoke

Waking up this morning was strange.

First, my alarm went off after an absurdly short period of time since I set it.

And there there were helicopters flying everywhere.
Bap bap bap bap, their rotors cutting through the early morning twilight like over sized hornets of bad news. (How's that for a description?)

A raging inferno was ripping through a neighbor's house. Poof. It's gone.

Geeze, what a mind warp. It was the lady's dream house.

Thankfully, nobody was hurt, BUT - talk about a bad day!

I'm always stressing the point, and I'd like to reiterate it: We need to appreciate, value, and realize how lucky we are.

"So," you ask.."What does this have to do with music?"

I've noticed, in myself, and others, a lot of wastefulness. But the kind I'd like to bring up today involves the wasting of notes. How often have you blown through a gazillion tone arpeggio, with a half-hearted and listless attitude?

I've done it, and I've seen other guitarists do the same.

Here's a funky little thought for you today. What if each note you played was alive, and the length of it's life was the duration you held it for?

Now, your first thought might be "Sucks to be a sixteenth note!"

Well, what if we approach music as if each note is living, and dying, for the song?

Sure, your buddies might look at you funny, but hey, I never said you had to tell 'em.

This idea might make us concentrate on making each note count. Now, sure, you can play a 64th note passage, but just make sure it counts.

After all, you might be burnin' on the fretboard one day, and the next, your guitar's literally up in smoke, just like my neighbor's house.

So do your guitar a favor, and treat each note with honor, respect, and a new sense of awareness. On a much larger scale, our own lives are sixteenth notes in a universe of funky galaxies. Microcosm or infinite universe, a note's "life" or my own, I'm fo' sho' gonna work on being more aware, and hopefully, mindful.

When you end your practice or jam session today, try letting that last chord ring out until it dies away on it's own. (This is especially cool with an acoustic guitar late at night.) Just let that note fade away into the darkness.

And don't forget to listen to it.


Trevor Harden said...

Great post. Great music comes from being present - not THINKING about it - but being aware, awake, present.

Norman said...

nice. a very inspiring passage.