On Very Old Strings

Played guitar last evening with some friends. Music stands and instruments were everywhere. It has been a few years since I have played with anyone, especially in a setting like this one, where the intent is to collaborate, learn and share. I am always intimidated by the skill of other guitarists as I feel like a complete hack, with little knowledge and little technique, and while I cannot say I let that fear go, last night was a very positive experience.

A few hours before meeting these friends, I sat in my office (very near where I am typing this) and tried to warm my stiff little fingers, loosen the joints, fire up the callouses, anything to make my playing a bit smoother. I recalled a few fragments of songs I keep hoping will turn into something more substantial. While I enjoy how these small bits of music sound, I get stuck very easily, losing sight of where I want the song to move next. They get shelved, forgotten.

I played two of these fragments for my friends last evening.

That was nerve wracking. They really had no suggestions, but seemed to like the musical ideas.  I have always been more interested in making original music while most enjoy playing the songs of others.  Last night we did both, but it was clear the interest level was playing covers.

Still, sitting in the same room as other musicians, playing, fiddling, talking, I felt a connection, something I had forgotten about. Music is meant to be shared and even though we didn’t write anything fantastic, or even play anything very smoothly, we had a great time.

I hope to do it again soon.

About Ryan Carty

There are some who call me, Tim?

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