james ingram and that f****ing tornado

i teach kids how to build careers in music.  performance, education, musicology, therapy, and other assorted paths.  the big kicker is that doing music professionally is sometimes (and maybe more frequently than 'sometimes') a drag.  if music is your trade, it is your job.  your livelihood depends upon working professionally towards the thing you love doing, which is the perfect storm if you can balance it all.

i often forget how much i like music.  hearing something can have an incredible effect on my mood.  i'm careful about what i listen to at certain points in the day.  my alarm is variations d'apollon.  i blast don't lose my number when driving home late from a gig.  i usually warm up on the space in a song to think.  sonja's ring tone is this prince jam.

yesterday, i had a hankering for some james ingram.  this guy is the real deal - holy smokes!!!  we were listening to his cd this morning while stumbling in our mid-coffee stupor, singing along with that tune from the movie about fievel the mouse. i love how he tilts the melody at 0:51.  sonja was about to blend her smoothie, but i waved her off long enough for me to hear the guitar solo.  she laughed (sort of) and told me she couldn't believe i actually owned this album.

my hometown got blasted by a big time tornado this weekend. we were all over the national news circuit, begrudgingly garnering our 15 minutes of fame.  miraculously there were no fatalities, but lots of damage was done to the hospital, college, schools, and assorted homes & apartments.  many of the strong-backed and spirited crestonians rallied together to get the town back up on it's feet again.  my mom says that she has never seen so many bobcats in one place, and my dad remarked that every other person was wielding a chainsaw.

what kind of music are these folks listening to?  are they seeking comfort, inspiration, understanding, or just want something to get their mind off of the tragedy?  when they hit the cd deck in their truck as they drive to the next work site, when they push play on their ipod and stick headphones over their ears, when they hum tunes while picking up debris, what are they listening to?  everyone is entitled to their own taste in music, and knowing (and respecting) this blows my mind when i consider what type of music could provide solace or pump up these folks.  charlie parker?  toby keith? rihanna? miranda lambert? linkin park?  that rotation sounds absurd, but it could very well be the soundtrack to my town's recovery (seriously though... nobody's probably listening to bird).

i am a good brute laborer, but am certainly not skilled.  i can't do any low-end plumbing, am a nightmare with electrical stuff, and have no business being around power tools.  i'm not really flush with money but will definitely donate to the red cross.  but what i CAN do is help lift the spirits of the community of my youth with the love of music.  get in where you fit in, right?  james ingram was dead-on with that album title. many of my colleagues have asked about my family's welfare, and several have actually offered their talents to me if i were to perform as part of a fundraising concert somewhere down the line.  sounds like a call-to-arms...

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