Like many students, my interest in music was inspired by a relative. For me, it was my mom, and then my aunt Mary. After my mom put us kids to bed at night, she would sit down at her Baldwin upright and play. Usually it was church hymns, Clementi sonatinas, or Bach minuets. Sometimes she would sing. When I heard the music begin wafting up through the heat registers, I crawled out of bed, put my ear to the floor, and listened. Sometimes I laid there for almost an hour. This went on for several years, but I never told her until my late twenties. You never know how you’re influencing people!
The second person to influence me was my aunt Mary. This encounter was very brief, but life changing. I started taking piano lessons at the end of second grade, but like many kids, didn’t want to practice. It wasn’t that I didn’t like playing piano, I just didn’t like the self-discipline practicing required. This went on until seventh grade when one day I walked into my aunt’s house. She was learning Beethoven’s Fur Elise. I was immediately enthralled. I asked to borrow the music. Thankfully she said yes! And I never looked back. Up until that day, my mom was lucky if she got me to practice an hour a week. But from that day forwards I met with my Baldwin piano for an hour or two at a time.
Piano suddenly became an extension of my voice. I didn’t have to speak a single word. My fingers spoke for me. I still loved writing, but there were certain emotions that could never be written, not with an older sister who enjoyed finding and reading my private journal! And so began my love affair with music.
Until next time. Remember, “Life is an adventure.”