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Posts Tagged ‘music’

I’m not really sure what tone this post should take.  It could be sad or happy.  The best word would be bittersweet, I guess.

The times they are a-changing, and with those time we too must change, make adjustments, and relinquish physical objects that hold many memories.

It was a big day at my parents’ house, Husby and I were there to give support and provide assistance.  I could say it was the day the music died, but it’s more accurate to say it was the day the piano found a new home.

The piano cost $400 when it was purchased new.  I have no idea what year that was.  It was owned by the Sisters of St. Joseph, the nuns who taught school and gave the children of St. Mary’s school piano lessons inside the convent.  Oh that convent!  That’s another story though.  The sisters eventually passed it on/sold it to my mom’s aunt and uncle.  I have no idea how long they had it, but at some point, almost five decades ago the piano was given to my parents and found a place in my childhood home.

It’s an old piano and a very big one at that – a Stark upright grand.  The room in which it was housed was dubbed “the piano room.”  My mom played that piano for pleasure for many years and taught me and my sister how to play until we got so good we needed instructions from other people.  Oh the countless scales I practiced, and moved from reading music for Twinkle Twinkle Little Star to the works of Chopin, Bartok, Bach and many other great composers.

Alas, the time came when the piano room must once again become a bedroom, which it was before the piano arrived so many, many years ago.  In order for it to become a bedroom again, the piano had to go.  Away.  Out of the house.

 

Skinny hallway

Donated to Keys for Kids, easier than selling and given to a wonderful charity, the piano left my childhood home.  The moving guys were fabulous and did the job without a nick to the walls or dirt to the carpet, and in record time.

Piano movers amaze me.  I know they do it every day, but still.  One of the guys moving the piano injured his back on the last job – he got to carry the bench out to the truck.  But he also got to be the spotter/reinforcement as the piano was wheeled down the ramp.

I had a little chat with one of the mover guys, telling him I learned to play on that piano.  He told me a couple of stories about the pianos he’s moved.  One was of an old woman who’s husband played, and when he died she donated the piano to Keys for Kids.  She cried the whole time they moved that piano out of her house.  It was as if the last remnant of her husband left her house with the piano.  My heart nearly broke.  The mover guy said they see lots of cases like this, and I feel like they’re compassionate and gentle when they move these pieces of history and personal attachment.

Away goes the piano of my youth.  I wasn’t overly emotional about it as I have two pianos in own my house.  The thing is, I haven’t played in years.  I was damn good at the keyboard, and there’s no reason I shouldn’t bring more music to my house and to my life.

The digital. A college graduation gift from my entire family, which saved my sanity and brought me joy in hard times. Plus, it has a plug for headphones for practicing!

 

The big one. Similar to the one donated by my parents. This one was given to me by a friend who gave it to me for the cost of moving it from her house to mine. It’s not been tuned since I received it nearly twenty years ago. Who cares? It’s a lovely piece of furniture and sounds really old-timey.

This event, my witnessing and support of the removal of the piano of my childhood, has inspired me to take to the keyboard again while I’m able.  Music is divinity, and I think my parents would be happy and proud to see me play again.  After all, it was their piano that introduced me to the glory of music.

P.S. to Mom and Dad ~  After my time with you during the piano removal I saw a black squirrel run across my back yard.  Seemed to be a sign.  Diggy says make that room into a bedroom again.  It’s right and good.

 

 

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I came home from work today and Husby had me sit down to the computer right away to look at something ~ it was about the coolest thing I’ve ever seen so of course I had to post it here.

Two songs I really like all rolled into one. What can be better than that? It’s the perfect way to begin the weekend.

Enjoy!

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Married life can get pretty dull sometimes…for some people.  I’m one of the lucky ones; my husband keeps me entertained nearly every minute I’m with him.

The other day Husby was gracious enough to allow me to record one of his talents, a talent I didn’t even know he had!  I don’t think he knew he had the talent either, so I guess this makes him kind of an idiot savant?  With that, I present the magnificent performance of Husby, and his musical clothespins.

Here’s to a week of finding amusement in the little things.

P.S.  Husby refuses compensation for his performances, but he does read the blog.  If you have any words of praise, please feel free to leave them in the comments.

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Picture this: a young woman in her early twenties decked out in leather pants and thigh-high boots and only a camisole covering her upper body.  Her long hair is brushed away from one side of her face and held fast with a sparkly barrette.  The other side of her face is partly covered by the long mane of intentionally chaotic hair.  She’s heading into a popular danceteria in Minneapolis to watch one of her favorite bands play live.  The Suburbs.  The dance floor will be packed with hot, sweaty bodies, hers included, slam dancing to Baby Heartbeat and Music for the Boys.

That young woman was me.  Those were days that will remain in my mind as some of the most fun days of my life.  But things are different now.  I’m older, and slam dancing is not only unfashionable, but also dangerous for someone who may or may not have the brittle bones of a woman in her fifties.  However, being a woman in my fifties doesn’t keep me from loving the music of my youth.  I wear jeans and a sweater instead of leather pants and thigh-high boots.  I have a neat little bob hairdo instead of a longer, wilder mane.  But in my head and heart I’m still that slam-dancing girl.  I remember what it was like to walk into the dark, smoky venue that was First Avenue.  I remember the adrenaline and the thumping bass that became one with my own heartbeat.

My little DiscMan and über fancy speakers set up in Craftland

I got home early from work today and headed straight for Craftland.  While listening to the music I slam-danced to thirty plus years ago to I deplasticized and flattened 144 bottle caps for future drink charms and magnets.

The beginning of a beautiful craft.

Doing a different thing to the same music.  Recalling old times while living my present life.  All is good.

Remember yourself this weekend.

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Nostalgia. Sometimes I think I’d rather live in the past instead of now, but then I think of Norma Desmond on Sunset Boulevard and how living in the past isn’t such a good idea after all.

I can’t help feeling nostalgic when I hear music from my past. I was sitting at the table working on my bottle cap magnets and Husby sat down at the computer and started playing around on YouTube. He was finding all sorts of songs from the ’70s and ’80s and playing them for me while I worked. After a few of his favorites he started taking requests. Out of the recesses of my mind came a tune and I blurted out, “Stephen Bishop, On And On.” I forgot all about that song until that moment; funny what feeling nostalgic makes you remember.

Now the song is stuck in my head. That’s not a bad thing because 1) I loved the song when it first came out and 2) now that it’s unburied I love it again. Do you remember On And On? If so, here’s your blast from the past.

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It’s no secret that I have a crush on Mr. Capecchi, the man who powers all of the music coming out of DeLaSalle High School.  His enthusiasm for music and devotion to the students are inspirational.  Husby and I have been fortunate to be able to attend all of the DeLaSalle fall and spring concerts since 2006 as both of our nephews, Paenney and Fojo, play or have played in Mr. Capecchi’s concert band and pep band.

Husby recently made the decision to donate his high school trumpet to the DeLaSalle music department.  It served him well back in the day and he’s kept good care of it all these years but hasn’t played it in decades.  He took a drive down to the school and met with Mr. Capecchi, showed him the trumpet (case included) and asked if the old instrument could be of use to the music program.  Mr. Capecchi gave the trumpet the once over and said it was in very good shape and would be available to anyone who wanted to join the band but didn’t have an instrument.  Husby was glad his trumpet would be put to use and given a second life.

This past weekend I got to see the DeLaSalle spring musical, Anything Goes.  I can’t even tell you how enjoyable it was.  The kids were all very talented and as adorable as can be.  It was a production fit for Broadway.  Fojo, now a senior at De, played with fourteen other musicians in the band for the play.  He plays a saxophone in the concert band, but for this production he took to the drums, something he taught himself over a period of a few years.  I was pretty impressed with his performance and think it’s cool that Mr. Capecchi lets the students play instruments besides those they play in the concert band.

Mr. Capecchi didn’t direct the musicians for the play, he was actually in the band.  And what instrument was he playing?  Husby’s old trumpet.  It was too bad Husby wasn’t able to attend the play; he was sick and felt like he had ice picks stabbing his ears.  So I went up to the band pit before the play started and asked Mr. Capecchi if I could have a picture of him with Husby’s trumpet.  Of course he was very gracious and even stood by Fojo and his bass-playing buddy Noah for a nice group picture.

“Ice Man” (bass), “Gump” (drums), & “Baby Face” (trumpet)

Fojo will graduate this spring and we’ll miss going to the concerts and plays and I’ll miss watching Mr. Capecchi direct the choir, orchestra, and band. Husby’s trumpet has a whole new life at DeLaSalle and will no doubt be pressed into service by many new students in the years to come and I’m sure Mr. Capecchi will continue to inspire kids with his devotion and passion for music.

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