Music Appreciation – On a Whole New Level

So, I was never blessed with any sort of musical ability. All of my dad’s musical talent skipped over me and landed on my sister. And I mean ALL of it. If you spend even two minutes watching me try to do the stupid “rabbit dance” game on the wii, you would probably end up falling out on the floor laughing at the serious lack of rhythm I have. (Ask my sister, she’s witnessed it. It is NOT pretty. If you are not familiar with the game – you have to have a little rhythm and make the bunnies drop into these little holes on the beat. I am “dance bunny-challenged”.)

You laugh…but really, I have none, zero, zip, zilch. Well, now that I think about it, I guess that is not true. I really can and do appreciate music. All kinds of music. And thankfully J. has enough musical ability in his little finger for the both of us, and he is also extremely good about making sure I am “hip” to the new music. We listen to a lot of music, and try to see a lot of live music. And I think between the two of us, we have quite an eclectic musical repertoire. I truly hope the girls will have some musical ability, or at least a good appreciation like I do.

I fantasize someday of being able to play something other than “Chopsticks” on the piano and have always really been attracted to the cello. I like the sound of it and it seems like such a romantic instrument to play. This was what was so random and crazy when I met my friend, Michelle. When she told me she was a professional cellist, I almost fell off of the elliptical. (We met at our gym!) How weird is fate?

So, I’ve told you all about her and her new album and how you should go listen to it on iTunes. (And download it!) I can honestly say that I listen to it almost always while I am working at Starbucks, my little office away from home. And I know as I listen to it, that it is Michelle, but I guess I have been strangely disconnected to it.

Until Sunday evening.

Michelle played in a concert celebrating her town’s centennial birthday. First of all, it was a fantastic concert. Really interesting grouping of musical talent. Very varied and all wonderfully played. But as I was sitting anxiously waiting for Michelle to take the stage, I realized that this was the first time I had actually heard her play. Live. In person. She has had her cello over to the house and played a little here and there, but not like totally focused, in the moment. Really playing.

And I was quite literally blown away. It was such a beautiful display of her talent. So much more moving than listening to her on my little iPod. And even more spectacularly, I saw an incredible side of my friend that I had never seen before. She wasn’t just my friend, or a mommy, but an amazing, accomplished, beautiful musician. I was really, really moved. I could have listened to her play all night.

After the concert we went for a celebration (both for her concert and her Birthday!) at a very fun little Italian cafe/bar. And it just happened to be Opera Night. So just picture the scene, intimate little restaurant, little stage up front and the pianist would just start to play a piece of music and all of a sudden someone would just stand up and belt out a song. And they all had stunningly beautiful voices. I felt like I was in a dream. And when the opera folks were done, they convinced Michelle and Mary to go up and play another piece. They played a Bach piece – both of them from memory. Really, really astounding. Good food, drinks, friends and on top of all of that surrounded by amazing music.

It was a very special little gift, and it wasn’t even my birthday!

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6 Responses to “Music Appreciation – On a Whole New Level”


  1. 1 Becky June 26, 2007 at 6:19 pm

    What an awesome experience you were able to witness. I am sure your friend was honored to have you there to watch her perform and celebrate!

    Thankfully, all five of the children enjoy music just as Tim and I. The girls’ favorite song to belt out is The Star Spangled Banner. It’s priceless, truly priceless to see how proud they are as they sing it at the top of their lungs.

    And remember, you have been blessed with many amazing talents, even if the musical talent seemed to have skipped you.

  2. 2 Aunt Meesh June 27, 2007 at 5:07 am

    For anybody reading this comment….the dancing bunnies are truly hysterical. AND…even funnier, is watching Care do it! Reading your first few lines had me giggling to myself and remembering my visit. It seems like months ago already that I was out there.

    For what it is worth, you really have gained some musical talent. I’ve listened to you sing, and you aren’t horrible. I think having J. sing to you has aspired your vocal talent. Both he and Je. have an awesome voice and could teach anybody a thing or two!

    I wish I would have gotten to hear Michelle play. I’ll go download it now. Does she have actual CD’s to buy?

  3. 3 Aunt Vicki June 27, 2007 at 5:50 am

    You may not think you have a musical gift — but you sure do have a writing gift! Every time I read your blog, I fell like I am right in the situation or experience you are writing about.

    That birthday/cello/Italian restaurant night sounds absolutely divine!! How wonderful to have a friend like you who appreciates a gift and then celebrates it besides!

    Love you,

    Aunt Vicki

  4. 4 michelle June 27, 2007 at 1:46 pm

    Amen to that Aunt Vicki!

    I am the lucky one. And Carrie, your voice is good! : ) Your writing blows me away! I only wish I had your creativity. You do give Martha Stewart a run for her money! Sunday night was the best birthday present I have ever had. Thanks Carrie for being there and for all of your support.
    Michelle

  5. 5 Papa (or Dad) June 28, 2007 at 8:21 pm

    This is a little late, but I’m just catching up on the blogs due to computer problems (still)
    I must get my two cents in tho’. I Love hearing you sing to your girls, and I’m sure they think it’s the best sound in the world.
    They don’t care about Pitch or Key when they need some comfort, and I’ve seen you give them that, and teach them those crazy Wiggles songs, and endless DVDs. Let the other Michelles (yours and ours) entertain the crowds, and the quartets impress people, you’ve got a built in appreciative audience of two, that will only remember how wonderful their mother used to sound when she sang to them.
    Besides all that. . . . your writing ROCKS

    Love,
    Dad

  6. 6 Laura McIntyre June 29, 2007 at 11:57 pm

    I will go and take a listen to your friends music, i have no musical talent either and used to have a friend in high school who could play any intrsument she wanted brilliantly , i was so jealous and had to really work to play simple lullabies


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