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The Journey......


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I play classical guitar. i've been working on several pieces while i get a new website up and running. specifically some pieces by Fernando Sor, Llobet, and the mighty JS Bach.


then i head over to you tube and see folks who are like 13 year old prodigies and i ask myself "why bother"



but then again i compare music, or ones musical ability to the forest. not every tree and vine grow to be 100 ft tall. some trees and flowers only bloom once and then are gone. in the desert, the peyote cactus can be rather small, but its inner abilities are well... you know...


there is something to be said for life experience that is translated over to how a piece of music (especially classical guitar) is performed. a 13 year old prodigy may play well, but lacks the depth to reach into the school of life to explain what Beethoven meant during Moonlight Sonata.


fugit... i'm making no sense.

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Actually you make perfect sense.


A wonderful example is a very talented "young" pianist named Condoleeza Rice.


I recall watching an interview where where she noted that although she knew she had both talent and skill, she came to realize that there were so many concert pianists that were yet more talented and skilled that such a career didn't make sense.


So... yes, she still plays for herself and I think she's done some concert work but...


Otherwise I think she has been rather successful rising to U.S. Secretary of State and as a uni professor.


I think there's always a crisis point when one realizes that one may be "good," and "getting far better," but simply lacks that something that marks a great talent at whatever the endeavor might be.


Me, I keep pickin' my own thing and hope to be able to enjoy it until I croak.


A lady friend and schoolmate of my Dad had a career as an orchestra violinist. I think she was an exceptional talent regardless that she didn't perhaps have that one extra step into being an international solo concert artist.


I took her to dinner one night while she was on a concert tour in my town. We talked at length on this sort of thing. Her bottom line was that regardless of her career and commitment to it, she said she envied me being able to play more or less what and how I enjoyed, even though it was not a full-time career.


So... Me, I keep pickin' my own thing and hope to be able to enjoy it until I croak. (Yeah, that includes a little bit of Bach as well as cowboy and rock and country and elevator-style jazz and...)



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I'm a legend in my mind.


And, I can outplay a helluva lotta people making a helluve lotta money playing guitar.


I know it, and THEY know it.




So remember, no matter what YOU think, you can always outplay some moron kid who's cuter than you and making a killing....

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No, you make sense. Maybe this helps...


I consider myself "Guitarded". I have short, stubby fingers - there's no way I'll ever mute the low E string with my thumb (I have to find an alternate way to do that if it's needed). My memory for random patterns is lousy. I have a poor sense of rhythm. I lack confidence to play in front of others and feel myself choke up. Yet, I enjoy sitting down with a guitar and working on something until I can do it well. Sometimes I play really well and it flows out of me. Other times, forget it.


I played in a band when I was a teenager and didn't seem to have these "issues" back then. So why now?


I stopped playng when I was 16 (when I got into cars and really discovered girls). I picked the guitar up again about 10 years ago when my kids started playing with my old guitar. They are both much more talented than me and I am thankful for that! I really love sitting and playing and appreciate when I notice an improvement in my playing. I've been working on improving technique and speed. Working on playing things without unwanted notes and noise has made a big difference in my playing lately. I'll never give up. I Look forward to gettting together and playing with others in the future.

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It's not all about flash and technical ability to play the daylights out of your guitar. A lot of it has to do with a)being professional b)doing a good performance c)choice of material d) delivering it with emotion. I often find a simple two or three chord song can have a much greater effect on an audience than hundreds of notes crammed into a 3 minute span. There is an old saying "Less is More".

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