Thursday, January 27, 2011

Music to My Ears.....

I am not musically gifted. Tried taking trumpet lessons when I was in second grade, but that was only because Eddie Santoro was taking lessons and he was so cute. That and my uncle T actually had a trumpet that I could use. The only thing I truly loved was the red velvet lining of the trumpet case. Growing up, one of my friends took piano lessons and I would go over to visit and she would try & teach me a song on her piano. I think there was a song called Hiawatha that she eventually did get me to learn. I would say that  I discouraged her from ever becoming a music teacher.
I can't sing a note..well I can sing a note but only neighborhood dogs can hear it ! But boy, do I LOVE music. The first record I ever heard was at my friend Kathy's house. It was her brother Coffee's 45 of Jingle Bell Rock. They had one of those consoles with a TV (black & white) and a turntable that rolled out when you pressed a button. How modern ! We played it while her brother wasn't home, he would have killed us if he knew. I don't have alot of music memories until I was 11-12 when the Beatles invaded. Oh, I had a portable record player, and my mom would buy a record that she liked once in a while and we would play them. I have a very clear memory of playing Elvis' Wooden Heart and the Righteous Brothers' Ebb Tide. Then came Meet the Beatles. My friend Kathy & I played that album over & over until we wore it out. I dreamt of marrying Paul...I had a Beatle wig and boots. Loved those boots, fake alligator with a big heel and chain on the side. I jingled all the way to my sixth grade classes.
In my high school years, we had an eight track at home and on Sundays my dad would play Johnny Cash and show tunes. Fiddler on the Roof, Pirates of Penzeance, Carousel. I would spend  some weekends at my cousins, and my aunt M would be playing Tex Ritter, There's  Blood on the Saddle. (I can still sing a few of the lyrics) My aunt M was a soprano and she could SING. I learned to appreciate Jimmy Hendrix from my sister K, and BB King from the "hippies" in my senior year art class.
Over the years my music tastes have evolved and at this point in my life, I don't think there is a type of music that I haven't listened to and appreciated. Now, mind you, I don't love it all. I am a big fan of  Funk, hip-hop and rap, but not gansta rap. I think Eminem is a talented guy, but don't care to listen to alot of his lyrics. Miles Davis, John Coltrane...I love smooth jazz, but be-bop not so much. I do still like a show tune, I can actually sing along with most of them . Carousel being one of my faves, Walk On is a big tear jerker. Classical, yes, love DeBussey's Arabesque #1. Still love to dance to Thriller, imitating some of Jackson's great moves. Can't Moon Walk though.
My kids grew up with albums , eight tracks & cassettes of the Moody Blues, George Clinton, Earth ,Wind & Fire, Kool & the Gang. Also Barry Manilow, Carole King and Carly Simon. I am a big Michael Jackson Fan.. How great was the Thriller album? I have my son T on super 8 film singing Joel's Big Shot, complete with mike.And I am so glad to see that they like all kinds of music, too. Both girls like a little bit of country..didn't get that from me. My grandchildren are being brought up on Metallica, Funk, Hip Hop, Black Eyed Peas and Billy Joel, Taylor Swift,  and Rich Charette's I Love Mud. (The kids concerts are priceless)
I can tell you , as I get older and actually slow down enough to really listen,  I hear all kinds of other music. I love being on the beach and listening to the surf. I love sitting in my living room and listening to the birds chirping away at the feeder. I love being in the middle of a family outing and hearing all of the family talking at once. I love it when my grandchildren sleep over and I listen to their sleeping noises and their soft rhythmic breathing. I love putting a shell up to my ear and "hearing" the ocean. I love to hear the wind blow across the tall grass outside our offices.I love to visit my friend M and hear the water going over the dam by her house. I have developed a real appreciation for ALL things musical. All of these things are now music to my ears, and you can hear it too, if you just take time to really listen.

PS- I read The Shipping News last week. Hadn't read anything by  Annie Proulx before and have seen this book around for quite a while and just never picked it up. It was one of the staff's picks at my local library, and I am glad I read it. I will be looking for another of  Ms Proulx's books, for sure.
I also ordered from NetFlix, Pillars of the Earth, the Ken Follett book turned into mini series. I did not have high expectations that it would do the book justice. It was such a great story.  I think the movie flowed along pretty well, but the acting was not very good. The book was so gripping..the actors were so bland. I did not even finish watching it. Instead I may re-read the book and it's companion, World Without End. They were both spectactular!!
Please stay "tuned".

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