Monthly Archives: June 2014

A Tough Slog and Ode to Joy II

I played a few times last week, despite my wrists still not being up to speed following my bike crash 9 days ago.  Mostly my playing was going fine until yesterday, when I felt more discomfort than I had been experiencing prior.  One thing that changed is that the day before yesterday I started back […]

Musical Kata and Maya Angelou

Last weekend we wrapped up a big fundraiser for my school, and part of it was a karate demonstration/performance.  For one piece, a group of us worked up the below synchronized musical kata (simulated battle), choreographed by my friend as a tribute to the late poet Maya Angelou.  In it, our moves and James Newton […]

Tona Brown:  Violinist, Mezzo Soprano

Carnegie Hall made another dream come true last night when Tona Brown took to the stage.  The 34 year old violinist and mezzo soprano had dreamed of playing Carnegie since she was 14 years old and attending the Governor’s School for the Arts in Norfolk, VA.  The show featured highlights from her album, “This is […]

I Played

Since my bike crash on Saturday I haven’t done much.  I did get out and go to work yesterday, and I practiced the violin before I went.  I was unsure how the practice would go – playing the violin utilizes different ranges of motion than I tap into otherwise. Mostly it went fine.  I had […]

Book Two and an Unwelcome Interlude

I’m plowing ahead in Suzuki Book Two, which Teacher tells me shouldn’t be too tough until we get about halfway through.  Book Two is apparently all about tonalization, or making the instrument sound beautiful.   In fact the first thing I worked on in the book about three weeks ago was not a “song,” rather it […]

Racing Music

Yesterday morning at 7:30 am I was standing toward the front of a pack of about 750 people in the middle of Sheridan Road at Lincoln St. in Evanston, the nearest north suburb of Chicago.  We were all raring to run the 15th Annual Ricky Byrdsong Memorial Race Against Hate, scheduled to go at any […]

Music and Iraq

My quest for musical passion takes place in an environment in which it is not incumbent upon me to worry about bombs being dropped on my building.  What occurs to me this morning is that so many people the world over do not have that luxury.  How impressive is it when a people plagued by […]

Solipsistic Navel Gazing

On Tuesday I was folding laundry and I remembered that I’d been wanting to listen to a podcast a colleague sent me.  For whatever reason, I fold laundry in silence – I don’t think about it; I’m already occupied, right?  So I have no idea why, on this occasion, this thing I’d been wanting to […]

A Back and Two Weeks

I had no lesson last week – Teacher canceled due to an early morning rehearsal schedule in the suburbs.  The cancel actually worked out quite well for me, unfortunately, since a week ago this past Sunday I threw out my back something fierce, and I’ve been on a slow road to recovery ever since.  Most […]

The George Bridgetower Sonata for Violin and Piano, by Beethoven

Beethoven’s Sonata Number 9 for Violin and Piano is a phenomenal work – both instruments are highlighted, the piece captivates from its opening notes, and it’s a full concert-length work.  The Sonata’s official nickname is the Kreutzer Sonata. But the piece debuted on my birthday – May 24 – in 1803 at the deft hands […]