Thursday, January 19, 2006

Musical notes

After about a ten year hiatus, I've decided to pick up my guitar again. Why, you ask? As part of our Bible-study-that-will-eventually-turn-into-a-church we have about a half an hour of worship. A good portion of the people involved in the study were heavily involved in the music ministry at the church we came from - primarily as vocalists. A few of us do have latent instrumental talents, though. Our keyboard player is a phenomenal vocalist who consistently underrates herself as a pianist; she really does a great job, especially since she hasn't played accompaniment regularly before. We have a percussionist; I hesitate to say "drummer" because she really is much more than someone who can just bang on a set. In addition to traditional western percussion, she plays several Polynesian instruments, including the ipu (the large gourd on the left of the book cover).

Hence, the urge to pick up the guitar. It is absolutely humbling how much I've forgotten. Basic chords came back immediately - G, D, A, C, B and their associated 7ths. As I've been playing other chords come back to mind. I remember how to form bar chords, but need to rebuild the strength in my left hand in order to do it. My head remembers a large variety of picking patterns for my right hand; it's just having a hard time getting my hand to remember. Still, 'way back when I was better than average, and I'm certain the skills will eventually come back.

The reason I haven't played more often in the last few years has become painfully obvious, however: the dreaded callous-forming stage.


Again, in case you didn't get it - OUCH.

Once upon a time, I could run a threaded sewing needle through the tips of my left hand fingers without knowing it. Since I was doing a lot of hand quilting at the time, that actually happened more often than you would think.

This, too, will pass, and will be replaced by the joy of praising God in music.

Until then, please ignore the faces the guitar player makes.

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