Thursday, April 01, 2004
1. Describe your journey into the various musical instruments that you play, i.e., how old you were when you picked up the first one, and how that led to you learning all the others.
I was probably 5 or so when I started to play piano. My mom is a piano major, so it the decision came naturally. She taught me how to read notes, then a little ways down the road I played clarinet for a little while. At age 6 my family began to sing together, and not much else happened musically for me until I was 11. My brother and sister had started playing trumpet, and I got so jealous that they played something together that I didn't, I picked it up, determined to learn how to play. Both of them have since moved on to other instruments but it sort of just stuck to me. I played in band, learned how to read notes, and since then have competed in several local school district competitions. After trumpet I started guitar, and then I taugh myself bass so I could play along with our bluegrass band. I occasionally play other instruments, usually sax, harmonica, trombone, and flute. I think it had a lot to do with my parents both being musical.
2. Do you consider yourself more of a sight-reader, an ear-player, or good at both?
I learned so sing harmony early on, so improvising and 'playing by ear' come pretty naturally. It's all about being familiar with music. If you can hum harmony along with a song, you can play by ear! Even if you can't, you still will be able to play melody by ear. I usually don't read notes for bass, or harmonica. Piano I do both, although I excel in neither! Trumpet I can play both, but it's nice to have music as a reference.
3. Do you teach music lessons, and if so, have you ever given a recital? If you don't teach, would you like to someday?
I don't teach formally, once in a while I give a friend a trumpet lesson. I have played a lot of solos/group pieces at our performances, but I've never played a formal recital. Since I don't take lessons, there aren't any set recitals. I would like to teach, but I wish there was some way to sort out the serious kids from the ones who are just taking lessons for their parents! It's very discouraging to see someone with a lot of talent disregard it by not practicing enough. Perhaps someday I'll be able to convince kids like that, that music is definitely worth it!
4. If you could meet any famous Christian who is no longer living on earth, who would they be, and how would you spend one entire day with them?
I think it would be Paul. He endured so much, and was so bold. God brought about in him such an incredible change of heart. Hm...I would spend the day talking and learning I think! I'm not sure about what particularly. I think the most important thing in life is to stay close to God. It is so satisfying to say 'no' to your worries, and just trust in him. And I think Paul is a great example of that.
5. Have you composed anything, and if so, what instrument are your compositions written for, and what are the pieces called?
I arranged a few hymns for classical guitar several years ago, but they didn't turn out very good! I have written some poems but unfortunately 95 percent were written when I was very upset about things, and don't reflect what my attitude about the situation should have been. Writing like that is an outlet for me. I always end up realizing how wrong I was about something after I've got it all on paper.
Thanks again Toni for giving me the questions!