I think these past five months have been the busiest for me since I left the school in 2010. Not including church services (of which there were many), I've had forty-something concerts, gigs and performances since November. And, of course, each of those performances represents hours of rehearsal, practice and preparation. Anyway, I offer this bit of information up to excuse my absence from the Internet airwaves. Otherwise, I've never liked listening to others tell me how busy they are, and I don't want to start doing it myself. (I know I've just done it but, honestly, I'm finished now.)
Now, if you don't mind, I'm going to talk about my son. (As if that's better than talking about how busy I am).
The church thrift store had two electric organs they were trying to sell. They kindly offered one to me (as if I needed any more stuff in the house). I tried it out for a while, but I think Elmer liked it better than I did. In particular, he liked the large, friendly, colored buttons and the electronic synthesized drum beats. Cue an 8-bit 80's samba.
(Who knew there was a blog titled "8-Bit Samba"?)
Not that he needs any encouragement to put things into his mouth, but Elmer has progressed very well at his recorder playing. He can now play what I call "Elmer See Sharp", otherwise known as "Jamming On the One". Maybe, in time, he'll get good enough to learn a few other notes. He likes it especially when I finger the notes and he blows. Especially when I trill.
Honestly, I can't wait to get him to learn more recorder. I really think it's one of the best instruments made by man. It's supremely portable. It's very easy to play and with only a relatively small amount of effort one can get a very nice sound out of it. With all the seriousness that I can muster at this hour, I think that if I were only offered a few possessions to take with me to some deserted and remote wilderness, one of them would be a recorder.
Elmer also likes to play duets with me. In fact, if he is awake and I am playing the piano he feels that it is his duty to come and assist his father. His specialty is bass notes, but now and then he focuses on high trebles. When I am recording anything, his sense of timing is perfect (...in the ironic sense).
Needless to say, I try to do all my recordings when he is asleep or gone from the house.
But now that I think of it, maybe I can do a whole series of recordings using his own musical invention as a ground. Surprisingly (and perhaps revealing Elmer's vast genius) his compositions tend to sound a lot like the grounds of the music Moses and I created for Sounds of a Sphere.
Don't get me wrong; I love my old piano. I've had it for many years and have played countless gigs, concerts, recitals with it. It was in my classroom way back when I first was teaching, and many kids played, pounded, puked and everything else on it. It is like a battered but still-servicable old car. I guess I've just decided that it would be more professional of me to have a stage piano that actually plugs into a house's PA rather than has to be mic'd in.
My old beloved keyboard has been moved to St. Mark's. The keyboard I have been using there for the past nine years was on it's last legs and my old keyboard is leaps and bounds better than it.
Elmer and I are glad that the busiest season is over. I know he'll be glad to not be so busy with his father. (Mama is glad to have Father around more too).
Happy Easter everyone!
He is risen!
I suddenly felt guilty about giving the organ back (Thanks Kerry!) Then I remembered that I have an old keyboard that I've owned for thirty years (I think I was ten when my parents gave it to me). I guess it qualifies as an antique (or at least historic license plates). Anyway I have officially bequeathed it to Elmer. It has plenty of colorful buttons on it and he was greatly amused by it. It is still in great working order. In fact, among all its various sounds, it has a Samba rhythm. I would bet money that it is produced with an 8-bit processor.