Recently I was chatting online with someone I met on a personals site. He had read in my profile that I'm a musician, and told me that he loved to listen to people sitting and playing music, that to him playing music is a God given talent.
Something about that seemed too disarming in the early stages of chatting with someone, and made me a bit uncomfortable. I often think of what a gift music is, and how when I create it can seem like it's coming from somewhere outside myself. I will even be thankful for the gift an instrument it, but I simply had never thought that the ability to play an instrument was a gift too.
As I got comfortable with that idea, I realized how true it is. Playing an instrument is one of the great joys and pleasures. I've been doing that most of my life, and maybe I've taken it too much for granted.
Throughout my life, that gift of playing an instrument has done so many things for me. It opened doors to many friendships, it got me through many rough times. It's given me an outlet, and a way to communicate when words alone didn't work for me.
Lately I've been pretty low, life has been weighing heavy on me. I've been playing guitar a lot, and it's done me a lot of good.
I worked in the music industry for 20 years, and though it was extremely rewarding to be involved with music so intensely, it also took some of the pleasure out of it. Deadlines are stressful. For the past 10 years I've been slowly reclaiming the simple personal joy and satisfaction of sitting in the living room playing guitar, and the things that got me into music in the first place. It feels good. Sometimes, going right back to the basics can actually be great progress. At least it feels like progress to me.
Though it's most probable that nothing is going to work out with my online friend, I'm grateful for the gift he gave me, the reminder of how special it is to play music, and to not take that for granted. He said he'd tried to play and just couldn't. I really don't know how I would have gotten this far without it.
This is the last of a trilogy of little guitar pieces I've done recently. There's not much to say about them, I guess there's something about where I'm at in them, and in their blurry abstract videos, and that's something I can't put into words.