Tuesday, June 18, 2013

You Are a Musician

Many years ago in college I had a professor who I had the pleasure to get to know fairly well and who at one point caught me red handed singing my heart out to Phantom of the Opera.  I had not been aware that anyone was listening and turned around to see a very astonished and admiring look on his face.  Shortly thereafter I ascertained that he played a bit of guitar, though he admitted this fact somewhat begrudgingly and attempted to dodge further questions regarding it.  I wasn't about to let him off the hook and meeting him in his office about homework assignments and the like I cornered him and asked him again about his interest in music.  In our discussion he asked if I knew a particular song and sang a few bars of it.  His voice was sweet, open, clear and simply lovely.  No frills or vibrato, but simple, honest and pleasant.  I responded offhandedly, "I was going to ask if you can sing; obviously you can."  He looked down bashfully and answered rather insecurely, "No I can't."  Automatically I nearly exploded from my chair, and gripping the armrests as I hung on the edge of the seat I leaned forward and looked sternly at him, emphatically correcting him, "Yes.  You can."

As a musician and particularly as a vocalist I often come across people who tell me that they cannot sing, have not musical talent, have no hope of musical prowess and the like.  My dear friends, please allow me to prove you wrong.   Yes, I have heard people sing thoroughly off key.  I still consider them full blooded musicians.

I come from a remarkably musically gifted family and virtually every family gathering on my father's side includes a guitar.  I have studied voice, piano, a little guitar and a plethora of genres across the board.  I do know music fairly well and I promise you are one in the set of musicians, whether you feel yourself so or not.  Music isn't about being on key.  It isn't about playing an instrument.  It is about emotion and the greatest songs ever expressed are the silent ones we sing in our hearts.  If there is passion in our souls, we are no less musicians than Beethoven himself.

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