About Me

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Atlanta, GA, United States
When I suffered a lip injury that ended my career as a classical trombonist, I thought my life as a musician was finished, but I fell in love with music all over again when Santa gave me a guitar for Christmas in 2003. Even as I was struggling with my first chords, I was planning a new performance career. As a trombonist, I performed with the Heritage of America Band at Langley Air Force Base, the Ohio Light Opera, and in pick-up bands for touring acts that included Rosemary Clooney, George Burns, and the Manhattan Transfer. Reborn as a jazz guitarist, I sing and play my own solo arrangements of jazz classics, am half of the Godfrey and Guy duo, and hold the guitar chair in the Sentimental Journey Orchestra. I have been a freelance music copyist since 1995, served as Director of Music at Northwest Unitarian Universalist Congregation from 2011 to 2017, and currently serve as Contemporary Band Director at the same congregation.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Back At It

Being a musician is a wonderful thing, but there are times when it can feel like a job. "Job." Just the sound of that short word sends shivers down my spine!

A few days ago, I found myself in a funk after finishing a short run of All Shook Up with Act3 Productions. I don't think I realized how much I needed a break from guitar playing until after that last show. In most ensemble situations, I am able to learn the music quickly without deviating much from my normal practice routine. All Shook Up was different. It was a difficult book to learn, and even during the run of the show, I had to stay on top of it by spending at least 30 minutes running through the tricky parts before each show. Over the past three months, I spent a large percentage of my practice time working on this show book. I cut way back on my usual regimen of licks and sight-reading, and I wasn't able to commit much time to learning new songs for my own repertoire.

After the show, I didn't practice for two days, which is highly unusual for me. I love playing guitar, but even with music, there can be too much of a good thing. If I hadn't had to teach a few lessons and play some rehearsals, I probably wouldn't have touched the guitar at all for two days.

Don't get me wrong. I wouldn't take back a minute of the time I spent learning All Shook Up. It took me way out of my comfort zone and forced me to become a better guitarist. I'm glad I took the two day break, though. I feel rejuvenated and ready to play again. It feels good to get back to my regular routine, and I cherish the "alone time" with my guitar more than ever.

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