Sunday, August 06, 2006

The magic

It's about time I got our piano looked at. What with one thing or another, it really hasn't been played for several months and it's in dire need of repair and tuning. One of the keys is completely gone and several others are starting to go. We've had the same problem with that one key for a few years now. It's been tuned and repaired several times but only lasts about six months. So our piano guy thinks the baseboard must be cracked. He hasn't seen it in over a year now I think, so I don't know what he'll suggest this time. It may be that he won't be able to fix it and we might have to go for a new instrument. I hope not. Partner inherited it from his great-aunt and it's special to him.

I began learning to play the keyboard/piano at about age seven or eight but started in earnest at age eleven. I never had any formal lessons, but took what I could learn from my father, from general music classes at school, and out of books. At some points in my life I practiced for an hour or more every day. It was only when I moved here two years ago that I actually clicked with reading music, however. I don't have to look at my hands very much any more and can sight-read with relative ease. My father admitted to me that I play better than he does. I like to play some old favorites but I enjoy playing new music more. I don't really have any music memorized though; I'm completely crippled without scores. I suppose if I took a theory class or got a good book I might get better at memorizing. I can play lots of pop/folk songs on my ukulele without any music. Because I know about chords I don't have to have music to play most any song on the uke. Partner is like that on the piano. He's not so good at sight-reading but can play you any song you like at the drop of a hat.

I like the piano and I like to play purely for my own amusement. I have no desire to join a band or group. In fact, I think I might dislike it as I would be overshadowed and possibly underappreciated. I would only want to perform as a soloist. However I'm perfectly content to play in the privacy of my own home when no one else is around. I remember when I was younger I used to enjoy playing duets with my father; the two of us could play music that we might struggle with singly. Now I've surpassed my father and can play those pieces completely unassisted.

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