18. August 2007 · 4 comments · Categories: Ramble

I think we musicians are sometimes simply unable to appreciate hearing music. We are taught early on to be critical. We are taught to listen and pick away at anything we hear. I can’t tell you how many times I hear students (and frequently students who have miles to go, and whom I wish would be more critical with their own playing) harshly critique a concert that was actually quite excellent. I want to grab them and say, “Listen first to enjoy. Embrace the music!” I suspect they are somewhat afraid. Maybe it’s a fear of liking something they then hear (or read) from others wasn’t good after all. Maybe it’s just that they have to feel better about themselves. I dunno. But it’s pretty sad.

And yet I have found that I, too, sometimes come in with an attitude of “Prove it!” when I enter the hall. (Something I did recently and for which I’m sorry.) I hate it when I do that. My attempt is to go to concerts with an attitude of, “I will be blessed.” It works. Really.

I’m not saying we can’t critique. I just think we sometimes lose something when our attitude is one of skepticism, cynicism, or simply a harsh heart (and ear) when we enter the concert hall. Maybe it would be best to say, “I will say two positive things for every negative one spoken.”

This thought has come to be via this video of a sweet young cellist who, it seems to me, clearly has some fine talent. One person commenting on the video writes:

He’s a total noob to the cello… He looks at the fingerboard almost all the time. I stopped doin that when I was 9

Sigh. What a hard heart. Looking at his bio it says he’s 43. If that’s truly the case, shame on him. If he’s a younger student, as I suspect, I just feel sorry for him.

18. August 2007 · Comments Off on Stolen Instrument Alert · Categories: Ramble

Heckel Bassoon
Serial number 5824
Date Stolen: August 10, 2007
Stolen at: Stolen during a house burglary.
Comments: Bassoon, Heckel #5824, complete with silver plated keys; high
D and E keys; right-hand whisper key lock; rollers on F/AbF# (little
finger right hand), E/F#, F#/Ab (right thumb), D#/C# (little finger
left hand); little finger whisper key; saliva tubes in all holes; two
Heckel bocals; case and cover.

All wooden sections of this instrument are original and marked with
number 3(…).

Contact me if you need the owner information.