As streetlight shadows tattooed skin
Whatever we were tangled in
All of it was music.
This longtime love of mine, Over the Rhine, drove into Minneapolis this weekend. They opened their guitar cases and their mouths wide and cried out an anthem to faithful presence. All the livelong night. They ran their fingers along fretboards and traced the lines of the map they had traveled all these years. I've been along for part of that.
As it happened, there was great deal of music to be had this weekend in my hometown. Speaking of faithful presence, the husband had his dance card full with practice, rehearsal, and a show. So, I struck out on the town to find my fortunes with friends new and old. The result was treasure.
ärt, I mentally prepared myself for a musical "workout," as in I thought that it would be very good - but kind of difficult to take into my ears and have my brain process it. And, like my previous experience, nothing could have been further from the truth. The music drew me in with its nervous excitement and joyous stretches of notes. What's more, Dave came over after the show and chatted with our table about what jazz means. "Improvisation is listening," he said. Also, he suggested that a person's character dictates how they will play: a generous man will play that way; a selfish man will play accordingly. That is, jazz, with its fluidity between form and freedom, provides a forum for the playing-out of personality. Finally, the advice he received once from another famous musician as a young man, "play it all." Don't limit yourself to a certain style that you happen to take a shining to right now. Play it all.
Or when the unwinding summer leaves you with a dry dusty warmth and hankering for cooler winds, you go out into it. You catch the last yellow rays of the day and the flow of blue riverstream. It's all etched in the driftwood cast up on shore, and you sit for a minute. With a brother, a lover, a friend. Play it all, to the last note.
Regardless, all of it. Music.
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