Tuesday, October 18, 2011

sometimes it's enough to make music

Our boys were in a band concert tonight.

Thing 1, the junior, is in Wind Ensemble, the 'higher' of the 2 HS bands. Thing 2, as a freshman, is in Concert Band. They both play trombone.

Tonight, as it has happened for many of their performances, I got chills listening to what they are a part of. It's lovely to hear them grow as musicians, and I celebrate each step they take on that journey. Chills are mostly a pride thing on their behalf.

Tonight though, kicked the chills up a notch. Something had changed in what they were a part of. That something caused distinct moments of such musical beauty that I was hard-pressed to think of those kids in the bands as mere teenagers playing instruments, but had to admit that at some points they and their bandmates were actually practicing the elusive art of musicianship. Nuance, tonality, tuning, phrasing, all were in evidence and sometimes masterfully done.

Seems their new band director is teaching them to play MUSIC instead of just notes, and it shows.

Happy happy joy joy, to experience these 2 young men be part of something bigger than them that produces a 'something' many people can enjoy. The transport back to my playing days was swift, and for a moment I was jealous of them and their connection with a group of like-minded people doing one thing all together to make art.

Back in the day, when I was an active musician, a moment of perfection while playing was capable of sending me, however briefly, into a wonderful fugue state of absentia from my body, when the body played and I could enjoy what 'we' were doing while it was happening. Sounds odd, doesn't it? Felt odd as well, but as time went on and the music and I became more accustomed to one another, the moments came more frequently, though always too briefly. A measure there, a few beats here, would slip past in a moment while body and mind and breath worked together to be one with the group in pursuit of music. Always stunning, always a goal and always a happy accident.

My hope is that the Things will have those moments aplenty as they are engaged in the pursuit of music, and that they can take those moments and encase them in a memory, clear and distinct, of what it's like to be one with many in performance of a true pure thing. There is nothing like it in this world, and I won't have anyone arguing otherwise.

But hey, maybe that's just me. I might be the only one captivated by mere seconds of time in which perfection seemed to be the very air I breathed. Could be I'm just prone to hallucinations, but I hope not. I ask you then - if you ever were, where were you when you caught the tail wind of a beautiful moment and captured it in memory?

Curious minds want to know...

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