Thursday, March 12, 2009

A Short Pause...

Well ladies and gents...

I've been running around like a chicken on crack-corn feed. I FINALLY overnighted my Dissertation off to my committee (late) after a few Kinkos catastrophes - apparently, no one there had ever heard of the concept of "front and back" - and I'm set to defend the dissertation next friday.

For the past 3 days I've lived in a constant state of sweat. It is still winter up here and I've been sweating. I lost five pounds in two days. Not whistling dixie either. Five el-poundos.

So here's what I've been up to, besides trying to edit, print and mail a humongous orchestral work to a committee of geniuses who will comb through my work with giant red pens.

1. I've started a new church job as musical director. This job has tuned out to be the most exhilarating job I think I've ever had. That's saying a bunch. Its hard to beat touring... I have a new love and affection for musical assistants and associates at church... since I don't have one and I'm it. Wait... that sounds like I'm saying that I love myself...

Yesterday, I spent a good bit getting all the folders ready for my choir. It doesn't seem like it, but one can REAAALLLY waist a LOT of time copying music and getting them into folders if one does not have the proper system in place. One little missing "trick" and that could cost you 30 minutes to an hour. My Choir is AWESOME, btw. Just amazingly talented singers and they are truly excited about worship.

2. I went from not accompanying anyone for 2 years to preparing to accompany Metropolitan Opera stars for some upcoming Church performancesI. That's slightly stressful. I've got to learn the Mozart Alleluia in two days... Not going to think about that one anymore right now.

3. I've been just a-wailing on the pipe organ every sunday. It is an absolute BLAST to play on old Bessie. I get to Improvise a Postlude every sunday and I LOVE to improvise. I can't emphasis how much fun this has been to play hymns and improvise Postludes on the volcanic pipe organ in a Cathedral, all for the Lord.

That brings me to my next task. I would like to name this here organ. I usually name all the instruments that I play. My guitars are Lucy Taylor and Al Varez. (pretty cheezy, but so is naming your guitar.) Keyboard's name is Bigole Heavyba Stard.

So you guys get to help me name her. Yes, it is a woman. I'm not sold on Bessie Lou. Conan stole that title for his desk and that used to be the name of my big 76 Carpice Classic that I drove in high school. Back then I also liked to call it "Hot-Girl-OFF!"

That being said, I will NOT be turning into the oddity that is the "organist." I will not. No offense there to my organist friends. Organists, you know what I'm talking about. Don't deny it. You guys are an eccentric bunch. I dated an organist once (long ago) and she was the equivalent of 3 or 4 people. Not size-wise, but personality. I once went to an organists house and he had his whole house built around a HUGE organ he had imported from an old French church. It was quite amazing. But... come on. That's out there. The only people that can compete with the organist strangies are the true guitar-gear-heads. They worship their pedal boards and blog about them... and sleep with them. Sometimes their blogs are nothing but Pedal-porn. Veeeeery interesting that both guitarists and organists share the same obsession over pedals.


4. Teaching. I've been teaching quite a bit. I love to teach. I probably don't need to teach near as much now since I have the church job but I love to teach too much to give them up and many of my students are becoming very good friends. Plus, it is just so fun to haul that guitar onto the subway. It is the only time that New Yorkers will get heck out of my way.

No matter what I do in the future, I will ALWAYS teach students. Besides being very fun, teaching is the surest way for me to keep learning.

So that's been my world for the past few weeks...


FancyPants said...

I like Bigole Bessie.

Or Bessie Lou. I really like Bessie Lou and Bigole Bessie for her nickname.

Chaotic Hammer said...

Pearl E. Gates
Polly Esther
Carrie Oakey
Anita Tune
Dinah Mite
Bertha May
Anne B. Dextrous
Crystal Cathedral
Amanda Playme
Paige Turner
Candy Pants
Mona Lott
Rhoda Camel
Sarah Nader

jengalslp said...

We had a huge suburban named Big Bertha. It always reminded me of a big organ. :) It's fun keeping up with your endeavors! I've really enjoyed your deep posts, and funny posts. Give my best to Amber.
Jennifer Galysh

Jenny said...

Now here's a question: Do you actually use these names of your instruments, or are they just there, like middle names (or, incidentally, most American Jews' Hebrew names)? I named my guitar Socrates. I never speak of it - or to it - as Socrates, it being an inanimate object and all. I'm curious about the naming phenomenon....

And indeed - don't ever stop teaching! You're the greatest teacher! And it's wonderful to have a teacher who loves what he does.

Anonymous said...

You should name it Gertrude.