What Not to Wear – What Not to Play

By melFebruary 4th, 2011NewsNo Comments

Many a late night I’ve gotten roped into the hour, which is usually followed by another hour, of one of my favorite shows “What Not To Wear”. While most days my sister, Ashley, reminds me I could be a candidate for the show (ah sisters), I’d like to think I have some fashion sense. I mean just because my favorite shirt is Mike’s old, worn yellow t-shirt with a Chicago style hot dog on it that says “A Chicago Love Affair” doesn’t mean that I don’t know how to pull together a killer outfit when necessary.

So, I was thinking – musicians seem to collect instruments like fashionistas collect shoes. Is there a rhyme (no pun intended) or reason to choosing these instruments? Most of the time, yes. Sometimes, we just see a cool instrument and think – I don’t have one of those! Or – it’s on sale, hmmm I could learn how to play this! I might someday need this! Sound familiar?

My newest addition to the instrument collection is an electric bass given to me by our dear friends the Grunditz. I’ve wanted to learn to play the bass because 1)it seems easier than the guitar – I mean one note at a time? I could do that! and 2) bass players just seem super cool.  And seriously, why is it that most of them seem to wear black and have a brooding personality? So having a bass would expand my musical wardrobe by complimenting my mood on those days I wake up and think, uh I’ll just wear black today.  and 3) a tall girl (almost 6 feet) needs a tall instrument to compliment her look right? An instrument is like any accessory – I’m sure Stacy and Clinton would agree that petite girls should have petite accessories and bigger (I’m sure they used a better word here) girls should have bigger accessories. So, looking back when I thought it would be cool for one week in the 7th grade to play the piccolo while I was the tallest girl in the class – maybe that wasn’t the best fit for me! Now, Stephanie (Clocks & Clouds – Check them out!) is so darn cute and little and she can sure rock that violin – another great example of an instrument just looking good on someone.

But then tonight, when I dug past my old & worn tambourine, past the dusty cabasa, and under the egg shaker I pulled out the guitar tuner and drug out my guitar to try -once again- to attack this instrument I’d really love to play well someday. I played the same 5 chords I’ve played for what feels like my whole life. I thought that this instrument sure looks sweet, but I’m just not comfortable in it. Like those dang grey heals with pointy toes that I wore downtown Denver one night until a friend had to carry my on his back because of my blisters, ouch. I unconsciously crept back towards the piano, set the guitar on the floor and settled into my old worn out t-shirt of an instrument. The keys felt the soft. The sound so soothing….ahhh. Now I could make some music here.

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