Monday, October 25, 2010

My Music

I got a baby grand piano for my fortieth birthday. It was a gift from my dead grandmother, so to speak. I think she might be a bit appalled at its lack of practicality, but I love it. It is so way cooler than a dining room table that could be in the dining room instead. Do I play? Yes, of course I do. Do I play well? Not so much. I can read music about as well as someone who took seven years of piano two decades ago. I am slowly working my way through Moonlight Sonata, though I think it is giving me corporeal tunnel. Mostly I play my own stuff.

It started years ago right before Valentine's day. My brother had written a pick up song on his guitar. I sat down to compose a ridiculous break up song for him. But I really liked my melody. It was pretty good and I noticed various family members humming it from time to time. I decided to write real words instead. I adapted a Wordsworth Poem to fit. My first creation.

It was written in the key of c and when I played it for a musical friend, he suggested I transpose it to a different key. Yea, okay, I'll get right on that. But I did and the process of transposing it really helped with my ability to read music.

I then wrote a lullaby to go with some words I had made up when my youngest was born because I didn't know the real words to Lullaby and Goodnight. Not sure how it might affect others, but I find it calming to play it.

I wrote an Irish jig to accompany the words to the Yeat's Poem Fiddler of Dooney followed by another Irish inspired song about a wandering boy who loves his Irish melodies and his Irish poetry.

I wrote a Wedding Waltz next.

I then wrote another lullaby about a Mocking bird. I am having a hard time remembering that one. No, I haven't actually put any notes to paper.

I just finished, or started as it usually works out: They usually continue to grow and change, though the heart of the melody stays the same) my latest song. I don't think I want it to have words. It has a sort of Russian or Polish sound to it.

Writing music is a funny thing. I can't just do it. I play around on the piano a lot, but every once in awhile a melody will come together. I don't know why it works sometimes and not others. I never have a tune in my head, it just comes out my fingers. I have tried to sit down with the intention of writing a song. That NEVER works. If I come up with anything, I don't remember it the next time I sit down at the piano.

I don't mean to imply I am artistic. I have no idea how the world at large would judge my songs. I don't compose them for the world at large (though if anyone wanted to buy them, I would sell) :) I don't think they are great, though I think they are good. I compose them because...because...because....

I guess because
Every now and then, they are inside of me and want to come out?
I am in a mood and it takes the form of a song?
It is an expression of something I didn't know I was thinking about?

I don't know why actually. But it is a wonderful feeling to create something you like. To make something out of nothing is an amazing experience. My little songs didn't exist one day and the next they did. Poof, just like that. And no matter how bad they are in reality, I love them because they are mine. My creation.

It made me think: that is how God feels about us. So maybe that is why I compose. Maybe that is why all human beings create anything: To remind us of a truth about THE Creator. Hm? I wonder.

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