Teacher: What’s your favorite type of music? Classical?
Student: I don’t have a favorite kind because music comes in all shapes and sizes.
My co-teacher and I looked at each other. What wisdom. And what a perfect description and a wonderful perspective of music.
Is that how you feel? After mulling his statement for weeks, I realized that I associate certain genres of music with certain instrument or events.
We are a musical family. My mother was especially gifted, although she had arthritis in her hands so I rarely heard her play our piano. The annoying thing about her was that she had perfect pitch. A perfect ear for music. So when I was practicing in the living room, she would scream out “That’s supposed to be A FLAT not A.” Sigh. She was always right.
My brother didn’t read music. He could sit down at the piano or guitar and play what he heard. He had a rock band and you’d never know he couldn’t read music. Another very talented musician in our family.
And then I came along with a strong love for music and a mediocre ability. I can read and transpose almost anything (yay me!). In my heyday, I was an avid piano and guitar player. I’m not being humble. I loved playing both, hated practicing and was definitely better at guitar. But Eric Clapton didn’t have to worry about any competition from me.
As many students do, I sang in our high school chorus. Eventually our chorus director realized I was an abysmal alto, but a pretty good tenor. So he moved me over so I was in the tenor section but next to the girls in the alto section. My voice thanked him, my ego not so much.
My favorite instrument is the viola. And that I was pretty good at. But once the guitar came into my life I dropped the viola like a hot cake. Guitars were cool. Viola meant 365 days of practice if I was being a good girl. Guitar was whenever.
For the piano, I enjoyed classical music, holiday music and “Top 40” hits. Guitar was strictly folk and rock. Viola was classical, mostly because I couldn’t figure out any other music.
Thanks to a recent Game of Thrones Music Concert, I am buying a viola and starting fresh.
Why? Because music comes in all shapes and sizes.