Thank You to My Sister and Friends

It all began with my wanting to play When I’m Sixty-Four for my birthday dinner last March. I found the sheet music online for a small fee. I also found FREE music. Wow. That pile grew to include favorites like Home on the Range, Simple Gifts, Amazing Grace and even a couple opera arias. Then my friend Dianne sent this Disney song book for the clarinet. Starting with When You Wish upon a Star, I …

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The Magic of Sound and Language

Had a magic moment a couple days ago. I picked up the clarinet, warmed up, turned to a page in a song book, and just played the song. I never expected this. A year ago I didn’t know how to read music. Each note was a struggle – ” Oh, that’s a C and how do I play a C?” sort of thing. This was very similar to studying a language. After studying French or …

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Back in My Arms Again!

OK, go ahead. Laugh. But all day long I have been very excited about picking up my repaired clarinet. I keep humming that old Supremes song Back in my Arms Again. I had brought the clarinet to a shop an hour away for repair; the rear register key was stuck. My teacher had tried to oil it and help me, but it was rusted shut – in less than a year since I had it …

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The Lamborghini Loaner While My Usual Clarinet is in Quarantine

This clarinet has been in my life a little over a year now. My dear sister-in-law Anna has loaned it to me; she bought it for her daughter who left it behind when she went to college. How kind and generous of them both! I had no musical training; as a child I had chosen dance classes. With a bum knee and the heartbreak of losing my best ever dance partner I decided I wanted …

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A Clarinet Breakthrough

This week I had a major light bulb moment. It’s funny. As a teacher (of other things like swimming) I had seen students pause or stall for a time before moving forward, and then at some point they became ready and wow! Weeks, if not months ago, my clarinet teacher had started to explaining the circle of fifths (sometimes the notations are reversed and called circle of fourths – especially in jazz groups). I had …

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Wow! I can Read Music – sort of.

I started taking music lessons about six months ago. I had never learned any music before that. I did not read music. But after practicing at least once, often twice a day (except the two days I was flying to and from visiting my parents), I had been making slow and steady progress through the book of exercises Recently I thumbed back to a couple carols in my exercises book. Then I remembered some music …

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