Wednesday, May 27, 2009

summertime in The comes the bride!

No, silly, not ME!!! But I wonder how many raised eyebrows or jaw drops that title got. Hee hee.

Anyway, while writing my academic fingers off this summer and getting this Diss done (or close to done--I'm shooting for all content and most revisions by Nov. 1), I have some wedding gigs. I haven't had a "gig" in a long time. Sure, I play every Sunday in church as part of my job, but weddings are a whole different animal. And, as they are starting to come together regarding music and form and logistics, I'm excited about adding some focused piano practicing into my summer schedule.

Now, summertime in The Buff may have un-officially arrived over this past holiday weekend. The temps aren't quite warm enough for me, but the nighttime remains above 50, and general 70s and 60s are expected throughout the days. And, the humidity is back so that comfy/cozy feeling and smell is in the air. So, while the the calendar still has a few weeks before "official" summer, I'm am gauging things on my own: I am done teaching until August, I am writing full-time, my son starts baseball this weekend, all of my garden is planted, the pool repair will be finished soon---so I declare that summer has arrived. Yahoo!

Each wedding is different, of course, and the variety of musical desires on the parts of brides always varies as well. So, I have pulled out all of these dusty binders and songbooks and other music that has been neglected over the past few years to search for sheet music or works for these weddings. I am even SINGING at all three weddings. Holy moly! I am excited to gather together the music for each and begin practicing. And, I have my piano to do it on rather than the keyboard, and the former sounds a whole lot better than the latter in my living room.

The biggest question is not the music for the ceremonies but the "other" stuff to play as prelude, background dinner music and so on. Over the years, especially in grad school, I have collected A LOT of music that sounds good, is relatively easy for me to play, and is appropriate for such occasions. Some of it is "classical," like some lighter/easier Schumann or Mozart, some is jazz standards, some is pop, and so on. This is not the time for a Beethoven piano sonata or anything "heavy" and extremely complicated. I have found a new binder that will collate stuff from the other ones, and it should contain about two hours worth of piano music in one source.

I don't think I'll practice everyday, although the next two would be ideal for getting going on this little project. It should be raining a lot today and tomorrow (remnants of official spring, me thinks), so I won't have to take breaks from writing to water the garden. Having a new "gig book" is exciting, and it has motivated me to try to find other places to play this book. Again, yahoo!

I realize that one aspect of my musical life (collecting all this music) has influenced my ability in another (playing weddings) which has reminded me that I could actually pick up other kinds of performing gigs (hotels, more weddings, background music for corporate events) and this has helped me feel better about writing all day because practicing piano is an attractive distraction. Allow me once more, YAHOO!

I am going to peek at my garden quickly to see moisture levels of the soil and stuff, but I think everything is doing well. After that, I'll begin today's "gig"---finishing Chapter 1. YAHOOOOO!

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