Thursday, November 21, 2013

The joy of singing

I HAVE NEVER watched much of the awful shows like American Idol or The Voice. To me, it's exploitation and a shortcut to fame. The brief snippets I've seen are more about the judges and their banter than the performers. It's overproduced hype.

There. I'm off the podium. Sorry about that.

Yesterday during guitar lessons with a new student, 8-year-old Abigail, we were working on easy chord transitions when she suddenly burst into song. The bad news is that it was a Taylor Swift song, but the good news is that it was with a band called the Civil Wars and was actually very pretty. And you could hear the guitar.

Then Abigail launched into another song. She had a big smile on her face. She closed her eyes and she was the happiest little girl I have ever seen.

I went out to talk to her mom. "You have a little songbird on your hands," I said.

"I know," her mom said. "She loves to sing."

It reminds me of my mother, who also loved to sing. She'd rock her grandkids to sleep with lullabies. I've been thinking about her a lot lately, because it was her love of music that ultimately led to what we are doing today.

I miss my mom. A lot.

I have a few other girls who take lessons and love to sing. I just got turned on to a band called Passenger and their song, "Let Her Go." We are doing it in lessons all week.

Tonight I'm running open mic night at One Restaurant, and hopefully you will get to hear other great voices, like the three gals below. One of them is my student, Sam Backoff. They will be forced to sing with the old burned out ex-sports writer tonight.

Who needs American Idol?

I get the real thing in lessons every day.

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