Saturday, July 17, 2010
I read Tawna's post on her experience at a concert Wednesday night, and decided to share mine as well.
Tawna calls her self a concert whore. Me? Until Wednesday, I was a Concert Virgin.
I should clarify what I mean by that. I have attended and performed in my share of orchestra and choir concerts, and even piano recitals. If you have ever attended an orchestra concert and listened to a stage full of twelve-year-olds run their bows over stringed instruments, you'll agree with me. That's not a concert, it's actually an exotic form of audio torture.
I also don't count the summer I worked at Six Flags as a roaming food service employee. While peddling cotton candy and bottled water, I endured several over-amped musicians on stage. Don't ask me who they were. I couldn't care less at the time, and did my best to ignore their ear-blasting noise. The only perk to working that shift was earning commission on the extra sales. People at Six Flags concerts got pretty thirsty.
I even once performed at the Meyerson Symphony Center, which was pretty cool, but still, I don't consider that a concert in the same way as a person who says to his buddy, hey, I went to a concert this weekend.
Now I can finally say that. Except it was on Wednesday.
I want the whole world to agree with me that Jamie Cullum is amazing, but I do have to leave room for personal taste. I'm the kind of person who only listens to five or six artists over and over, and Jamie's been on my short list for over a year. His kind of music never gets old.
Seeing him in person? Jaw dropping. Heart stopping. Especially from the twelfth row with a perfect view of his fingers as he made love to the piano. Literally. His whole body moved constantly in time to the music, frantic and spastic to up tempo songs, and lulling and romantic to ballads less than a minute later. I sensed a kind of magic musical creature expressing itself through his limbs, one that lived constantly inside his head. He seemed perfectly at ease sharing this thing inside him with a thousand people. Girls would shout their love for him in the middle of the song, and he'd take a break from singing the lyrics to make a witty reply. In between numbers, he bent down to let a lady in the front row cool him with her portable fan, managing to get the whole audience laughing about it.
Most of all? He let the music take him over, and you could feel the joy sweating out of every pore. No ego, no pretenses, no too-cool-for-you looks. Just music and joy.
I want that for myself. I want whatever creativity that comes through me to be uninhibited. I want it to light me up like it did Jamie on that stage, because he looked like he was having the time of his life, and it didn't matter if he performed for twenty people or twenty thousand; really, it was just him and the music.
Sharing it with the rest of us was for the music itself, not him. The music demanded to be performed, demanded to be publicized.
Writing should get the same honor from me. Whether it's for ten people or ten thousand, I'm putting it out there to respect the writing itself. It was a joy to let it flow from the muses mouth to my finger tips, and I'm honored and overjoyed to be the conduit.