Saturday, April 3, 2010

Circuit Training

An hour of practice, and hour of writing piano arrangements, repeat; blog, email, clean apartment in a hopefully successful attempt to keep the rodent(s) away. Fueled by cookies (it's Easter somewhere).

Was well on my way to a two-song evening, but during the time slot I had allotted for the second song ("Piece of My Heart"), I got sidetracked researching break-up albums. As a result, I didn't play the song. But I did discover and fall in love with Erma Franklin's version of it (which is the original, having been released before Janis' version), and I found, read about and/or downloaded break-up songs by Snow Patrol, Bruce Springsteen, and a half a dozen other artists. So it was still an hour well-spent, even if the internet is the archnemesis of time-management. Before that: "Every Breath You Take", and experimenting with incorporating the melody and the iconic guitar part into a solo piano arrangement.

Good day all around: Beautiful weather and a walk in Central Park this morning, and this afternoon my good friend Christy came over with her screw gun and level. She hung things around my apartment while I made brunch and took pictures of her pretending to be Rosie the Riveter. We talked about boys and future plans and how particular boys do or do not fit in with said plans (mostly do not), and then we sang through some stuff - that is, she sang, I played.

Some people find that they're happiest doing whatever job will afford them a tolerable lifestyle and enough time and energy after work to do what they really love. Christy, a talented, hard-working and beautiful (which helps for a female in this biz) soprano, is now halfway to getting her MBA, a trajectory she started after one too many demoralizing experiences trying to be a professional performer in New York City. So far, my experience has gone in the opposite direction. I found that the grind of a day job, even though it was music-related and actually used a lot of my musical skills, was draining my soul of energy and turning me into a very angry person. But I can foresee a day when ping-ponging around the isle of Manhattan for a few bucks at a time will get old, and before that day comes I either have to move up the ladder I'm on or think about switching ladders.

What's the difference between giving up and simply deciding that what you thought would make you happy is not, in fact, making you happy? More on this later, back to circuit training.


  1. "What's the difference between giving up and simply deciding that what you thought would make you happy is not, in fact, making you happy?"

    I postulate this:

    "Giving up" is when you stop doing something, and a vacuum is left in its place. Deciding to be happy is choosing to do something different.

    "Giving up" is a negative action; choosing a new path is a positive one. It begins with "I want" and moving towards whatever that is. Instead of "I can't do this anymore", it is "I want xyz for myself".

    The tough part, sometimes, is figuring out what the hell we want.

  2. How is it possible that two such TALENTED BRIGHT & INSIGHTFUL WOMEN live in the same block?
    You both AMAZE MOI!!
    PROUD to know ya both!