When one door closes….

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(photo courtesy of my friend, Mark Welsford, of Fairchild Photography; taken at the Rock Show hosted by Main Street School of Music in Arnprior, Feb. 23rd, 2017; with my ladies band)

 

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So….as of four days ago ie Monday, I am no longer part of the Werth It band.

Yeah…..bummer, eh?

Some changes in life seem to take a long time, and others can happen real fast.

All in a matter of a conversation, even.

It’s a parting on good terms, as the three of us had a fun time with all of our practices and a couple of performances. At the beginning it seemed as if we all shared a same vision and goals for our band, but over time it became clearer that things were getting somewhat askew.

As with every band experience I learned more about music – new songs, which are of a diverse mix, and I shall miss not playing them. And the dynamics of yet another group of people seeking to share their love of music.

Today as I was doing some more thinking about the change of events, I started focusing on more positives.

a) we might bump into each other again and have an opportunity to jam to songs

b) the ladies band I am in is still going strong, and now that our most recent Rock Show performance is behind us, we are looking to working on some new songs, That’s always an exciting time!

c) I was in conversation with a musician friend I haven’t seen in quite a while, and one of the things we discussed was getting together at her place and she and I just jamming out. I found out that she also plays the piano, in addition to bass! And we both sing, so that will be something fun to look forward to…. ūüôā

d) things that I had to pass on or decline, because they conflicted with the band practices, I can now attend again…..like the monthly blues jams. Even though I willingly passed on those, I did feel a tiny twinge of regret last month, when I had to miss my drumming buddy, Andy’s inaugural time at being house drummer for the blues jam…..something he has been dreaming of doing for a long time. So, I know how much it meant to him. From what I heard, he did a marvellous job of it! ūüėÄ

e) and finally, more regular sessions with my newest drumming coach/teacher, Derek DeBeer (whom I was introduced to by Peter Fredette at the last League of Rock showcase night in December). I could only juggle two sessions so far, and both times we had a blast! We did kitwork in those sessions, but he also teaches hand drumming – he’s originally from South Africa – and I hope to also attend one of his monthly drumming circles, where I’m sure there will be plenty of African style rhythms to explore and learn…..and in a larger group, too!

So…..all that to say…..all is well. And life goes on. ‚̧

 

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Saying Good-bye to Mary

Saying good-bye to another inspiring, beautiful soul. ‚̧

 

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(photo courtesy of Google images)

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She made me laugh; she had me smiling; she had me thinking.

Mary Tyler Moore inspired me. From the days of the Dick Van Dyke show and with her own show, The Mary Tyler Moore Show. I loved those shows. Great stories Рwell written and acted dramatic and comedic bits.  She became a role model for me to be confident and take on challenges and face the world with optimism.

Thank you, Mary. ‚̧ ‚̧

And…..

I just found this video clip today.

 

COOL!

Good to see Joan Jett put her spin on The Mary Tyler Moore show’s theme song, “Love is All Around.” ūüėÄ

A fun tribute! ‚̧

“Who can turn the world on with her smile?

Who can take a nothing day, and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile?”

 

 

“Photographer’s Choice”

With busy Christmas time happening, I just now squeaked in to submit four photos for this week’s photography assignment, entitled “Photographer’s Choice.” ¬†It’s a nice change. ¬†A bit like picking a flower bouquet…..an open-ended mix.

The following were my submissions:

Photographer’s Choice #1 – Archived, Feb. 2014 – Walking towards the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau (formerly known as the Canadian Museum of Civilization in what was formerly Hull).
This street seems to have this lonesome feel to it; I just like the afternoon sun’s shine on the street.

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Photographer’s Choice #2 – Archived, Nov. 2015 – Well, music is an important part of my life, and it seems that when I plunged back into playing music at a later age of my life, I also made up for my younger years by going to more rock concerts than I did back then.
You can imagine my excitement, when a girlfriend wrote to me and said that she had two tickets to see Santana!! I had missed seeing him the previous year, when he had come to Ottawa to perform at Bluesfest…..so I was bound and determined not to miss this second opportunity.
Yep…we were willing to drive two hours to Kingston, Ontario, in order to see one of his last concerts on this most recent tour.
He and his renowned band delivered to the audience with incredible energy, lots of enthusiasm, great verve….and included a song as a little tribute to Prince (who had just passed away a few days before). ‚̧
We all were such a happy, pumped, appreciative audience!

I picked this photo from the bunch that I took, because you can see Carlos Santana as he is…..with his larger image behind him…..with the warm yellow lights shining brightly and casting that same warm yellow glow on all the heads in front of me.

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Photographer’s Choice #3 – Archived, July 2007 – This time I’m picking one from another area of huge interest to me…..travelling. For this one I picked a photo of a smaller Air New Zealand jet that was going to fly from Auckland Airport on the North Island to Blenheim Airport on the South Island, which included seeing some picturesque views of the water between the two islands and some snow-covered mountains on the South Island.

In this photo all of the passengers have boarded, and the flight crew of two (pilot captain and navigator) are getting us ready for take off.
To note that we are ONLY 16 passengers on this plane! There are eight single seats on both sides of the plane. I was in the fifth row. Outside of once being a passenger in a four-seater Cessna, this was the smallest jet plane I’d ever flown in. SO COOL!!
And it was a double propeller plane…..quite noisy. Haha!

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Photographer’s Choice #4 – Archived, July 2007 – On a hike in the Nelson Lakes National Park on the South Island, New Zealand,
I spotted these two black swans foraging and swimming together in the lake that my friends and I passed as we headed for the Brunner Peninsula Nature Walk.

These two seemed to be in their own little world…..and I thought of how swans mate for life What a lovely intimate moment! ‚̧

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NOTE: ¬†Some of you may remember this swan photo from my Nov. 30th post¬†– you can see it here¬†– ¬†in which I had written a haiku along with this photo. ¬†It’s one of my favourites; hence, why I included it again in this assignment.

Another Music Discovery

However much Facebook CAN – if you let it – open up a bigger global community to its users, I have found that blogging has widened my horizons tenfold.

Every time I work at posting my own writing and photography, I also read and look at what other creative people – world-wide – bring to the global community….and I am continuously astounded and amazed, enthralled and….that also includes educated as well.

As a result of exploring what some of my followers are up to – and I am constantly meeting NEW people all over the world as well! – I discovered this gem of a music video…just today… by Jain (whom I didn’t know) and her song “Makeba.” I had posted on Facebook about learning of Miriam Makeba a couple of months ago, which included a youtube link to one of Miriam’s well-known and much-loved songs, “Pata Pata.”

I thoroughly enjoyed Jain’s tribute to Miriam Makeba in an effort to bring this woman’s music and civil rights activist work to a newer, younger generation.

Have a look! ūüėÄ

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Click¬†here¬†to see the original blog post published by Slippery Edge, featuring a background story to go with Jain’s music video.

I also searched out a youtube link to the same music video by Jain…

 

 

And if you are also interested, the following is the youtube link of Miriam’s song, “Pata Pata.”

My interest in Miriam Makeba was re-kindled , when by mere chance I heard her song being played a couple of months ago on a French Canadian radio channel, and it brought a flood of memories back for me, because I used to hear that song a lot when I was quite young, and I always loved it.

 

 

 

 

The Lady with the Harp

Over 20 years ago a close friend introduced me to a Canadian musician РLoreena McKennitt Рwho has been a dear favourite of mine ever since.  From the first time I heard her singing and harp playing, I was entranced and enthralled and only wanted to hear more of her songs.  She is also known as a composer, accordionist, and pianist who writes, records and performs world music with Celtic and Middle Eastern themes.

Luckily, I have had the utmost pleasure in getting to see her giving a live performance at a music festival in Ottawa a few years back Рat an open air festival Рand even though it rained heavily that day, all of her staunch and keen fans endured the wet in order to see her show.  I was in that audience!  A cherished experience for me.

Even though in addition to her harp playing, I saw her play the keyboard and accordion, equally well, I primarily think of her as “The Lady with the Harp.”

Here is a youtube link to one of her well-known songs, The Lady of Shalott. ¬†It’s a poignant tale within a song, taking place during the time of Camelot.

 

 

In some of her songs her singing adds a haunting quality to the lyrics. ¬†As also in this next one, called “The Bonny Swans.”

 

 

As I was looking through more youtube links featuring her songs, I also came across this one – “Greensleeves” – which is a particular favourite of mine; firstly, because of her beautiful version of it, and secondly, it was the first full-sized classical song I learned to play on my guitar in my pre-teen years. ¬†It’s a lovely old-English song, and here’s the link below….

 

 

 

 

To be Inspired…To Dream

It’s the second day of my 3-Day Quote Challenge!

Having dreams, nurturing them, and having them come to life is such an important part of our lives, but it isn’t necessarily something that everyone does. ¬†For so many reasons.

Dreams are a big part of the fabric of our lives, and they deserve to be protected and believed in and achieved.

There are many quotes on pursuing one’s dreams.

For today I picked this one –

Don’t be pushed by your problems. Be led by your dreams.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Often we have dreams, but also often we get into a mode of thinking that tends towards the negative. ¬†This quote looks to living your life positively….by focusing on your dreams….that which gives you passion and gets you all fired up in life.
And important, too, is that dreams don’t just occur in younger years. ¬†They can spring forth in later years as well.
For my personal example, here is a photo of me at a drumkit, performing with a band in the League of Rock show in December of last¬†year. ¬†I have loved music all my life; however, circumstances and choices made through the years kept my music dream on the back burner…..until they brought me to a place where I jumped into music once again,¬†after my children were well into their teen years. ¬†I started drumming only eight years ago! ¬†When I was 48, I signed up for lessons and the path led ever further…..to playing and more learning and performing. ¬†I haven’t looked back since. ¬†It’s been a blast of a ride! ¬†Lots of dedication and determination and….PRACTICE…..haha! ¬†And meeting all kinds of amazing people and musicians along the way.
I let go of some dreams of my youth but then nurtured other ones to add to my life’s fabric.
*****
And my nominee today is Conrad .
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(photo taken by Steve St. Jean at the League of Rock Showcase; December 17, 2015)

When Music is a Racket…

….as in a tennis or squash racket?

But yes, here is another example of, well, when there is no limit to what the human mind can conceive and construct with which to create cool music.

Check it out!

Whipping up some classic tunes

Finding myself in a reminiscing mood last night for classic oldies in brass music…..and up popped the name, Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass!

Lots of fond memories!
My parents had an album that I would listen to over and over on the record player when I was a little girl. ¬†It had a yummiliciously looking photo on the front cover of a young woman covered in…..”Whipped Cream and Other Delights.”

So, I did some searching and scooped up this one for your listening pleasure…..AND perhaps to get your mouths watering…..haha!

 

 

And here’s one more signature one by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass….

Another BIG favourite of mine!

 

 

ENJOY!

 

Do Giants Play Piano?

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If a giant wanted to play piano,

He’d want it at a comfortable height.

And a building would make a suitable stand

To hold his piano in place.

 

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Then the giant would stand behind his piano,

And his massive hands would travel back and forth

Purposefully, across the black and white keys.

He would bob his curly-haired head in time

And sing along…..so deep-sounding.

He wouldn’t need a microphone,

Because his voice would carry well over everything.

His rhythmic toe-tapping might cause

Some things at the street level to get shaken up.

 

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And when he isn’t playing,

His piano would just glow in the night sky.

 

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Tonight when I was coming out of the National Arts Centre after watching a play, I happened to glance up and notice the lit-up “piano” at the top of one of the buildings in the downtown area of Ottawa.

And then my imagination started thinking of that musical giant who would play on it.

Would he play jazz?  Blues?  Ragtime?  Classical?  Or punk!

 

 

Melodic Rhythms – Introducing Hang Drums

Today a friend posted a video clip of a person using mallets and playing a tank drum, and it has a light and whimsical sound to it. ¬†It’s such a fascinating instrument!

I added to the conversation by including a video clip that I have saved for a couple of years, ever since I was introduced by a different friend to the sounds of HANG drums. ¬†I am including the clip for you to look at….and see for yourself what you think.

It still captivates me,¬†watching the two musicians playing their two hang drums and creating lovely rhythms and beautiful, rich tones. So imaginative in composition…..and it gets your body moving along with it…. and such lightness of touch in the playing!