18. October 2008 · Comments Off on I was told … · Categories: Symphony

… that I played well tonight. (The comment was even more flattering, actually, but I don’t want to get all goofy here.) I hadn’t asked the musician, but he just came up and told me.


The thing was, I was having a most dreadful time on focusing. Sometimes my eyes just go wacky on me; I can’t see things clearly. It’s as if I’m going into my old daydream state I did when I was a kid; I loved having everything around me go out of focus and I was perfectly happy to be in my own little world. Yeah, I was weird that way. (Other ways too, to be honest.) So there I was, on stage, knowing that the first notes I play are soli with the trumpet. And I’m thinking, “FOCUS, doggone it! You can’t space out for the Debussy!” I had to work incredibly hard to keep my eyes in focus, and to keep my brain on music and not in some nebulous other world sort of place. I’ve not had this happen to me for an incredibly long time.

I’m not sure what was going on. Perhaps all my laziness today just added up and turned me into a space cadet? But it was a bit disconcerting. And no one wants to be disconcerted at a concert. Right? (Hmmm. Could it be that my iron level is going down again? Might that do this to me? I wonder!)

Later several other people also complimented me, so I’m assuming even though I was in la la land I did fine.

Tomorrow is another concert. This time I think I’ll have some coffee early enough to not get the shakes but late enough to make sure I’m wide awake and … I hope … focused!

18. October 2008 · Comments Off on Life Saving Music · Categories: News

US medics have found the Bee Gees’ 1977 disco anthem, Stayin’ Alive, provides an ideal beat to follow when performing CPR on a victim of a cardiac arrest.

News you can use!

I read it here.

I suppose I should purchase a recording of this and carry it with me at all times. Or I guess I could just sing the darn thing as I perform CPR. OR … how about I play it on my oboe while someone else saves the life? Hmmm.

John Adams, one of the most revered living classical composers, has claimed that he is blacklisted in his native America and is being followed by the security services.

The 61-year-old musician has accused the United States of being in the grip of a political and moral panic and has complained that he is now grilled by airport immigration officers whenever he flies home because of his controversial reputation.


Okay, oboe players may be more rare than pianists, but learning the oboe when you’d rather be throwing the football turns extracurricular activities into tedious homework.

I read it here.

I try to mention this on occasion. Don’t play oboe merely because you want a college entrance “ticket”. It’s just not worth it, and it might not work! Play oboe because you like the sound of an oboe. Play oboe because you love the orchestral experience you get with oboe. Play oboe because you think we get all the great, make-em-cry solos. Play oboe because you think making oboe reeds sounds like a total blast. (Okay, that last one … forget about it.)

18. October 2008 · Comments Off on That’s a Lotta $$ · Categories: News, Opera, Videos, Watch

The mezzo-soprano has signed a $10million (£5.8million), five-album deal which will see her move to Los Angeles in the New Year.

This is about the “classical music singer” Katherine Jenkins. It appears Placido Domingo has taken her under his wing, too.

Miss Jenkins, who says on her website that she tries to emulate both Marilyn Monroe and Madonna, is one of the most successful British female soloists in history, with her last album Rejoice selling 500,000 copies.

Well, okay … I can see why she’d want to emulate them. Sure.

“I do not understand where the idea came from that opera is only for privileged people, I am as happy singing before 70,000 people at the Millennium Stadium, as I am in front of a few hundred in a small concert hall”

Heh. Yeah. Happy either way. But I’ll bet you make a lot more money with those 70,000.

I guess, in addition to Mr. Domingo, Mr. Terfel must like the singer too.

Speaking of Bryn Terfel … here’s a cartoon that features his incredible (okay … my opinion!) voice:

Don Giovanni

I could do without the silly growl and odd picture of Mr. Terfel at the end, though.

(That’s a weird oboe A though … is it really an oboe, or is it just that my computer’s sound isn’t the best?)

18. October 2008 · Comments Off on BQOD · Categories: BQOD

I think the oboe is actually one of my favorite instruments. And not just because of the associations that come from actually knowing an oboist. 😛 I came upon some oboe music on Naxos just now on a different search, and I find the sound comforting.