Tuesday, November 26, 2013


  Not at all music related, aside from this adorable young lady was keeping me distracted during practice this evening. And I'm pretty okay with that. She's being fostered and I was very close to taking her home with me, but I don't know if my dog, Buckley, is ready for a kitten.

She kept ALMOST jumping onto the keys. I was waiting for it so I could see her run across them and play notes as she did so.

That lady-like hand is not mine. Just want to clear that up.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Sheet Music Prices

  Having matured from teenager to man - or at least man-sized person who still feels and possibly acts like a teenager - alongside the internet as it was doing the technological equivalent, I would always go online to hunt down tablature for music I wanted to learn while I was learning to play guitar. Even back then, I didn't think much of it and it was always easy to find websites dedicated to people transcribing their favorite songs onto 'paper'. It seemed very natural to me that there would be that sort of community. With those memories cemented for nearly two decades, it came as a bit of a surprise (though it shouldn't) to find that piano sheet music is often locked behind a pay barrier. I would guess 90% of the music I've searched for was locked and around $5 apiece for the sheets, which seems rather steep when you can get the actual song performed by the actual artist typically for a dollar.

The usual view.
  I loved the wild west times of the internet and as such I am very much of the 'content should be free and unrestricted' camp when it comes to the internet (with exceptions, of course), so generally I feel frustration when I run into these pay walls. Mostly because, "gaaaah, I want to learn that song noooooow" but also because it feels a little shady. I would be fine with a charge for "official sheet music" from the artist I suppose, but to be charged by a random person for someone else's music seems very iffy. I'll grant that it's a fair bit of work but it's still not really your work to sell. Sort of like if someone'e transcribed an audio-book onto paper and then tried to sell it to me.

Monday, November 11, 2013

"I Got Blisters On Me Fingers"

  I keep falling farther behind on my writing, but every free moment that could be spent writing has been spent trying to master a song that has defeated me time and again. It's a bit out of the range of my meager skills, but I've never let not being good enough at something stop me before. Hopefully "practicing" is one of the few valid reasons for maintaining extended silence.
  Other moments have been taken up by me bringing the guitar out from retirement. Usually when I pick it back up, I feel rusty but competent enough. This time it felt nearly alien in my hands and I realized it had been far too long since I played, a mistake I'll try not to make again. What really drove home how long it had been was that the calluses on my fingers were long gone so after an hour of (very clumsy) playing it felt like my fingers had been taken to a cheese grater. That is a feeling I have't experienced in many years.

This is how it felt.

This is closer to how it actually was.

  Of course, it ended up feeling worse than it was and when I looked, there were just slight indentions. It reminded me of the time I went to France and on the first day (out of 14 days) I managed to get a blister on my foot. I was confident my shoe was overflowing with blood from the golf ball sized blister, when in reality it turned out to be so small you could barely even see it with the naked eye.

  I read a quote the other day about how writing about music is pointless, and while certainly people out there with more vibrancy and texture to their descriptions when writing about music would be affronted by that quote, I do sometimes feel as if what I'm saying is very redundant and need not be spoken. I have to try and keep in mind that I'm doing this mostly as an exercise to keep my mind focused on practice, and less for entertainment purposes, which is a struggle for me as historically most things I write I do so with the intention of - if not humor - entertainment
  The biggest challenge I'm finding is that it is difficult to write without giving audio examples of what I want to discuss, but I'm not yet at the level where I'd be comfortable doing that. 

"I can't let you be, cause your beauty won't allow me-
Wrapped in white sheets, like an angel from a bedtime story"

Sunday, November 3, 2013


  Everyone should check out my incredible piano instructor's album:

  A few of the tracks make me feel like I'm listening to music that a love child of Mazzy Star and Sigur Ros might create. And that's hard to beat.