Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Moving At The Speed Of Sound...

Falling back into "the routine" is something that usually comes easily for me. After the conference and a nice relaxing drive back home, the usual events of the week started off without missing a beat. As musicians we are conditioned to mass amounts of repetition and practice. Our schedules are fairly regimented and life moves quickly when we are working our hardest. The schedule this week is one that entails quite a great deal of work, practice time, classes, and yes, etc, etc, etc...

It's already Wednesday and I feel like I didn't even get a chance to breathe between Monday and Tuesday. Hope it continues, it feels great to have this kind of rush keeping me occupied...


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Very Lucky...

Day two of the conference was excellent.  The knowledge and musical ideas flowing throughout the event has been superfluous.  A teacher, with a long and illustrious career, was inducted into the MENC hall of fame.  His acceptance speech was extremely touching and brought tears to the eyes of everyone in the room.  His key point was, "...we are very lucky, you and I", to be here, to be musicians, to be educators, to work with kids and have a job that makes a difference.  It was heartfelt and his sentiment was empathetic as he was in very close company amongst the numerous educators in attendance.

I would have to agree that I am among the very lucky.  To be where I am at this point in my life, to be who I am, to know that I am progressing into something more.  That constant progress is what we strive for and there is always something more into which we can evolve.  Music is love, we share it with each other, with the world, with our students, with ourselves.  It is something that is very special to me, very close to my heart, and being here among other musicians who not only possess that passion, but try to instill it in others always "recharges my batteries".

I hope that much love and music finds a place into your heart and does the same for your "batteries".


Thursday, January 22, 2009

It's All About The Music!!!

So, the musicians are off to Colorado Springs!!!

The drive was really nice. Leaving later in the afternoon than I had anticipated, but it was a great idea.  It gave me time to have lunch with Nick, which was awesome.  That coupled with the fact that I got a chance to lay down for about an hour before the drive made it that much better.  Kelly is a great driver and he really enjoys making that car go fast.  We listened to some great music and had some snacks....road trip...hells yah!

I'm looking forward to the conference and the clinics.  Working the booth will be easy this year with so many people from the school in attendance, but....I miss my BAMF and really wish she was here.  I had hoped that it would have been possible for her to come, but I know that there will be another great opportunity for fun and excitement as the time for Reno approaches.  (Party....hells yah!!!)

Making time for sleep now and going to have some fun in the Springs tomorrow...


Saturday, January 17, 2009


The words on the screen don't mean least I didn't think they did....

Sometimes things get to us...even me.  I suppose we wouldn't be human if we didn't say something out of turn, or make comments and then end up taking it the wrong way.  I've always felt that if necessary something should be said and I've done my fair share of "speaking".  Sometimes it's been pretty bad...other times its been extremely good.  Trying to find that balance is difficult.  Learning how to deal with it is also hard.

Growing up was hard to do and there are times when I feel like I should never have done it.  Up to a certain point its inevitable that change occurs and people evolve.  I find myself looking back and wondering how I've evolved into who I am now.  I remember that each time I've made a mistake, or worked successfully through something (big problems and small) it has affected me in a positive way.  Each change, each new avenue for learning has helped me grow and become a better person.  Making the climb and moving forward, making progress, is what I know how to do these days.  Working hard and remembering to try and keep that balance is the goal.  The results speak for themselves.  The end result is yet to come, as it is always an uphill motion to make progress.

I can only pass on what I have learned.  I can only deal with what's in front of me right now.  I can only be the best that I can be and expect others to do their best.  My standards are for me and me alone.  My caring comes from the heart and it is expressed in what I say and do, not from my job, or my schooling, or my playing.  My love of music is endless, yes, and I know that it is what I'll be doing forever.  It shouldn't be something from which to shy away, but should be embraced, shared with care, and, at times, taken with a grain of salt.  The world isn't perfect, life isn't always the way we want it to be.  People are human and we do make mistakes...I'll be the first one to raise my hand and say, "Yep, that was me...".

Wherever you are, whatever you might be doing, remember that it's all a progression.  Life is just that, progress for each of us in our own way.  Done with caring and love and some fun, it can be great, but we have to balance that with hard work and determination to be happy.  Happy at what we do, who we are, and with whom we become close.

I hope that we can all share it, together, forever.


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Busy Bees and Sandy Beaches...

Day three and already I feel like my brain is melting down! Actually I love it and I have really missed school. I suppose its safe to say that I'm going to be doing the school thing for life! There's definitely something to be said for being busy all the time and this is definitely the term for being busy. I thought that my last term here would a little easier but they are going to make it as difficult as possible. (They being everyone...including myself) I wouldn't have it any other way. I love the fact that every day is packed full of things to do. Practicing, rehearsals, work, bar tending, concerts, sectionals, inventory, gigs, private lessons, teaching lessons....I simple cannot imagine my life without these things. Granted that a nice relaxing vacation on a white sandy beach with clear blue waters does sound appealing, I don't think I could go on one without my horn and a bag full of charts.

The first week is shaping up to predict how the rest of the term will flow. There is a definite air of "fast and furious" surrounding my schedule. Though, I do feel it necessary to mention that I absolutely could not accomplish anything without the irreplaceable guidance, mentoring and friendship from my advising professor. He has been the rock, the foundation, the anchor, the lighthouse, and any other metaphor that has helped me through my time in this school. He is one in several billion and I can't think of ways to thank him enough.

It's a great start to a great year and the best of times here in the mountains. Making music and enjoying life...I can't think of anything better. Even the beach sounds a little boring compared to all of this...


Monday, January 12, 2009

First Day Back!

The first day back after break has traditionally been long and tiring.  Today was no exception.  It seems that in our absence the department has seen fit to make sure that the first day back will always be long and tiring.  (Good times...good times...)

The day was great.  I was really glad to get back into the swing of things.  Getting up early this morning was better than I thought it would be and practicing first rattle out of the box was awesome.  I'm definitely going to make a habit of taking the mornings to practice and get some extra time in the practice rooms.  It was quiet, there were plenty of rooms available, and some how the department felt just a bit more cozy at 8am.

Rehearsals was pretty good for a session of sight reading.  The pieces are low grade difficulty and I see them coming together fairly easily.  Honor band should be fun and I can't wait to play some great music for the kids this year.

Work was good as always and I think this new quarter will promise good things for everyone, staff and kids.

All for now...Ciao!!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Clean Clothes and Awesome Kiddos...

Laundry day is definitely a nice long day of quiet.  Nothing but the sound of the washing machine's low swish swash and my thoughts.  That and some music in the background...God bless iTunes.  The best part...clean clothes at the end of the day, lots and lots of clean clothes.  I think I like the fact that I can just relax while the clothes are doing their thing in the machine, especially while drying.  Those contraptions are freakin' magical, and, at times, almost hypnotic.  
Listening to music and watching them tumble on medium-high heat, wow, that's enough to send me into a coma like repose.  (Ha ha ha)

The compliment of people at the place where I normally dry my clothes was fairly scarce this afternoon/evening.  A few rando's and then a mom with her two kids.  Those kids were awesome, playing and laughing together.  It reminded me of my sister and I when we were little like that.  All the world was a playground and everything was funny, to the point of laughing out loud at even the littlest things.  I wish every environment could be like that.  Maybe it is and I've just grown out of seeing the world in that way.  I love working with kids, but lately I seem to be losing my interest in their world.  It's a great world, and I love to visit every now and then, but I'm feeling more and more like my visits should be short and to the point.  I need to get back into the groove of my music and enjoy life as that playground.  To see things the way they do and try not to lose that perspective in my life.  Those kids at the laundry-mat were a real eye opener.  I miss the days when I would run everywhere, even if it was only 10 feet away, just running and enjoying each moment of the quick trip.

Maybe I'll try running all over the place and see if I can catch them off guard this week...


Thursday, January 8, 2009

Trio Reunited...

The return to school is going to be legendary.

Hanging out with good friends last night was definitely something I had been missing and I was so very grateful that they were there.  We had dinner and watched a movie, the latter to be described as unique for sure.  The dinner was great, not because the food was anything spectacular, but because we were together.  It just seemed to taste better, the night was a little warmer, the environment was that much more friendly.  I felt whole again....

The remaining days of "vacation" are winding to a close and already I'm moving into high gear to try and get as much accomplished as I can before the term begins.  I just hope it will be enough to make light work of the road ahead...

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

...Of Work And Awkwardness

Tuesday, yet another productive day.  I even managed to get in some practice time - woo hoo!  More program planning for the kids, some work for the theatre, and even some stuff for the school.  Wow, I'm on a roll.  Just have to keep it going.  I think that the more sleep I get, well, I know it's all about the sleep, but I'm just glad to have these days to get things accomplished.

I had breakfast with my sister this morning, it was really nice to just sit and talk.  Working from home is truly a blessing.  I know that with my chosen profession I doubt there will be much time for it, but I really like the feeling of coming downstairs to my office and getting work done on my own terms and in my own time.  I'd like to find some facet of my career that will allow me to do something like that.  Other than directing a really kick ass jazz ensemble!

Other than that, I ended up working at the bar this evening for the theater, and then I went over to a friends house to play some cards...oh, wait, scratch that.  First I parked in the wrong place, walked right into someone else's house.......(awkward).......and theeennnn I went to a friends house to play cards.  Needless to say I felt really silly being at the wrong place, but it all worked out and we had a great time.

Tuesdays are definitely working their way up the ladder for best day of the week.

Much love on this cold chilly night from the mountains.


Monday, January 5, 2009

Productivity is the word of the day!

Monday was great!  It was probably the most productive Monday I've had in a while.  And while it sounds kind of mundane, those days when I'm really constructive seem to be the best!  I paid bills, made sure that things are in order for my last term in school, did some program planning, and even managed to reconstruct the lesson book for work.  It was great!  It was nice to get some shopping done and then clean my apartment.  I was glad to just spend some time with myself, getting things accomplished and enjoying the quiet of home.  I think that it's important to not only make time for yourself, but to really enjoy that time and center yourself in any way you can.

I think I'll go and read, or practice, or organize some of my music library....yah!


Sunday, January 4, 2009

Wakey Wakey...



I'm now convinced that the strongest relationships are built upon those things, events, conversations, stories, and "one-liners" that we can't just recreate for anyone. It has to be for those friends, those best and closest to us. Those who know us and can relate. The relationships we build with those people, they last and last beyond all others. I know this because it is easy to return to those moments and easier still to make sure that those moments carry on in our lives. The fun, the total lack of control while laughing, the love that comes as a result of keeping it alive in our memories is the best of results.

Family and friends: Thank you for keeping my love alive with yours. I hope that we can share more and more of the same in this new year!


Saturday, January 3, 2009

The Dawn of 2009...

Too long has it been since I've posted.  The new year has come and it started off with a bang!  (Literally)  Being sick for the last couple of days hasn't helped, but my spirits are high and the first couple of days during 2009 have been enjoyable thus far.  The skies have been filled with sunshine and clear blue and the snow only started falling this morning.  My work at the club is taking a new direction and the arts program is going to soar above the rest.  I can't wait to dig in and get the ball rolling on the new and improved arts dept. at our humble little club.  I just want a picture of all the smiles in the next couple of months as it is going to be incredible!

The New Year's celebration at the arts center was a success thanks to an incredible effort of hard work (as well as a labor of love) from two of the best guys I know.  My deepest gratitude and many thanks go out to them for putting so much of themselves into the theater and the organization.  The new year promises great things for the Arts Center as well as our 'theatre'.

As I watch the snow fall gently this morning I'm reminded that there is a time to slow down and take a short break from all the chaos of life.  For me that time is today.  I think I'll read for a while, and then maybe a nice long movie at home.

I hope everyone had a wonderful New Year's and that you are all well!