Tuesday, December 05, 2006

The Devil Updated

Yesterday, at my lesson, I sat down in my chair and played the Just Desserts swing number. Usually, if I completely stink at something, my teacher will stop me--it's just too painful to let me continue--and he'll correct my mistakes. Then I start over and try for something better.

But this time he didn't stop me. I played the whole thing start to finish, feeling as if this time I was getting it right, like I was projecting the correct pulse. At the end, I put my horn back down on my leg and looked at him with raised eye-brows, waiting for a word of encouragement.

He said, "So, did you practice this with a metronome?"

Deflated, like a leaky balloon that slowly falls from the ceiling down the floor, floating aimlessly with no fuel and no hope for refilling, destined to shrivel into a plastic puddle only to be scooped up and tossed into the trash, party ended. Is that a melodramatic description? Probably. It's just that I had played the stupid thing with a metronome, several times. But without that external ticking, I miss beats here and there, so that after a couple lines beat one isn't beat one anymore.

So we played it and played it and played it until I saw some hope, a little boost to the balloon. I have made a commitment to myself--there will be no crying during horn lessons. But if I were a weaker soul, I would have dribbled a few tears over that one. I hate that.

On a brighter note, Teacher gave me a lecture on the evolution of music--pre classical to classical to romantic--I loved it--it made sense and helped with the Beethoven.

4 comments:

Sassy Sundry said...

Hang in there, Robyn. You can do it.

dive said...

He sounds like a great teacher, Robyn.
And the swing feel WILL come. You've picked yourself up after a fall and already made some improvement.
Believe me, when it finally clicks, it will open up a whole new world.

Robyn said...

thanks for the encouragement. Nothing ever comes easy, the older I get the more accutely I am aware of that face.

Ms Mac said...

We all need a bit of melodrama every now and then to see us through the tough bits. I liked your analogy.

Keep on plugging saway at it and you'll get there in time.