When I started piano lessons last spring, my approaching 40th birthday was a big motivator.
Something about a milestone birthday triggered my deadline response, and I thought I’d like to be able to play at least one song by my 40th.
Turns out I can do a decent job at several songs, including Scarborough Fair and My Cherie Amour. Not great, but you’d recognize the tune.
Today I’m posting this video for several reasons:
- My musician pal Paul Caluori told me that as soon as I can, I need to play music with people — in part because I need to get OK with playing in front of people. No matter when it is, it’ll be nervous and scary, so just hurry up and get it over with. So this is the first time I’ve let anyone but John hear me play. Done.
- My piano teacher Sheldon Landa reminds me weekly that I need to give myself permission to make mistakes. I think he’s talking about piano, but it’s also a good life lesson. One of my biggest musical challenges is that if I screw up, I just want to stop, and Sheldon urges me to just keep going. The joke is that if you hit a wrong note, play it twice to make it look on purpose. Yup, I’m posting a video of me screwing up a classic song and owning it.
- We’re leaving for New Orleans next week, so if I’m going to make my public debut playing (and messing up) something, it might as well be “When the Saints Go Marching In.”