Sunday, April 5, 2009

I'm home!

We had a great couple of shows this weekend. For privacy reasons, I will not list the exact cities, nor am I listing my band. But we tour frequently and fairly far away. I love getting to travel and I hope that I can one day have an even more full time career in performance. I do music full time (which is an amazing blessing!) but I really want to be able to do more non-classical shows. About this: don't get me wrong; I LOVE playing and teaching classical. I love the performances and the rehearsals. But there's something about the connection to an audience in a non-classical show environment that is truly thrilling. And maybe this is a fault that has built up over the past 300 hundred years of classical performance. Maybe it's more limited to today's society. But whatever it is, sometimes (not always) I get the feeling that I have touched an audience more with a non-classical show. I also stem from a family of non-musicians and I do think that they find it easier to relate to the acoustic folk songwriter stuff that I do (and the rock stuff!) than my classical playing. These are strictly my observations, and I still love classical; I have been raised on it for 14 years and I'm not "leaving" it! I hope that branching out into these new (for me) fields isn't seen as being "unfaithful" to my first love. ;-)

Now, for the quick weekend recap, because it's 1:30am and I have to up pretty early (for me!) at 8:30am.

I had a great bowl of cereal at home to get me started off right.

I added frozen bluberries to the bowl and skim milk, plus a spoon of PB and a banana and coffee on the side:

This is the coffee that I was drinking and that you'll be seeing for the next few days:

Then I drove to meet up with my band and we drove for several hours straight to the venue. We stopped for lunch at a Sheetz and I got a foot long turkey, no cheese on "wheat". I actually really like their sandwiches for some reason and they're super cheap! $2 for a 6 inch, but I knew I was hungry so I got the footlong. I only ate one half though and had the other half way later, after our show. But anyway, at the venue we were served dinner and I got their Cobb salad with chicken (requested to be added, and I request the bacon to be left off because I don't like bacon!) and a pomegranate viniagrete. It was all free! :) We also had up to 3 drinks each free (most venues give us free alcohol!) but I don't drink before or during shows and only VERY occasionally after shows. Mostly, I save the drinking for when I'm at home with my friends in an atmosphere where I don't have to be professional. ;-)

That night we drove to Baltimore, MD (close to where we played--hint hint) and stayed with our friends. Here was the view of the harbor from the condo we were in! It was amazing!

And who knew--Domino sugar is based in Baltimore. It's the big building in the background. The whole downtwon was gorgeous and the condos looked more like luxury hotels (which salready already in a very good way!) It was beautiful! I really love seeing new cities and I sincerely hope I get to continue to incorporate traveling into my violin playing career! :)

We woke up late (around 11:30am) on Saturday--but in our defense we didn't have to be anywhere too early and we hadn't gone to bed until almost 3am! We hopped in the car and drove to the next venue. I am reading "Nickel and Dimed" and I highly recommend it! It's excellently written with humor and wit, and the author demonstrates sensitivity and compassion toward America's minimum wage working class. I'll post a review tomorrow! But I got through the first 2/3 of it on this trip. :) Forgive the googled picture.

We ended up playing in a church gym turned-concert series venue on Saturday night! It was a cool idea, because a gym is very spacious, thus having room for chairs and tables for people to listen.

This view is from the stage--we got lights! Obviously it was small scale, but it turned out to be a really cool gig. The audience was so involved. They loved us and were grateful that we had come to perform--which was a humbling experience to me to know that we can provide pleasure and entertainment for people! We got to sign a few autographs--always exciting--and sold a few CDs. It was a great show and they said they definitely would have us back whenever we were in the area. This offer is really nice, because then we can try to route our tours in that part of the country with this gig in mind as one stop along the way.

They brought us pizza and by that time my blood sugar was so low I was shaking and my heart was trembling; I don't get hit too hard with hypoglycemia anymore, but every once in a while it comes on hard and fast! All I had had earlier was this:

plus about half of a ThinkThin bar and some Starbucks. (Keep in mind this was from waking up at 11:30 to about 6pm, with the snack eaten at 4:30pm). So I was extremely grateful for the pizza and had 3 LARGE slices of veggie! They were delicious! I don't eat pizza too much at home because obviously it's not the best choice for an everyday kind of food, but I reealllly love good pizza and always greatly enjoy it when traveling! I also had my clif-Z bar plus a couple of small cookies that they set out for people before the show.

I had some strawberries and pound cake afterwards and we drove home on Sunday morning. I went shopping at some nearby outlet malls and found some cute stuff, but I'm tired and I really want to read in bed, so I'll post from Sunday + Monday tomorrow.

The plan for the morning is recording rock violin from 10-12:30, then get gas!, go to the gym, go to the library to get some music, work at home, teach 5-6, gig 7:30-8:15 (plus about 45 minutes of driving each way). I'm sad because I'll have to cancel racquetball due to the gig that came about at the last minute (earlier TODAY, for a show tomorrow!)

Good night, although I'm sure you're all asleep already! The rumor you've heard about "those crazy late-night musicians" true!!! :)

Oh wait, I need to leave you with gymnastics video #2 (on my blog so far!)

I firmly believe that the above beam routine is one of the top 5 beam routines EVER performed, especially when you consider its difficulty level! It is mind-boggling to me to think of Carly's sheer perfection in this routine. Now, I know from a technical standpoint that she did have a few deductions but I honestly have a hard time finding them and I'm not sure why the judges scored her as low as they did. (9.725, which is very good, but are there really .275 worth of deductions?) Enjoy the absolutely stunning gymnastics!

OK, now I'm going to sleep. :)


  1. sounds like a great weekend!! i only play classical, but i DEFINITELY understand your view about non-classical performances - i have been to non-classical concerts and have been SO inspired every time. music is a language & levels of communication is never limited to one type or style of music! i love your approach to that. i often wish i could play jazz.....

    that beam routine is so close to perfect it's scary. mind boggling! i love the close up on her face before her launch off the beam.

    do you get bad nerves before performing? and are your nerves different according to the music you're playing (classical vs not) ? very curious! i don't think i'll ever grow out of nerves.... i'm always terrified :)

  2. Love the gymnastics video. It makes me want to do beam again (one of my fave events)!

    I'm glad the shows went well! I really think that communicating with the audience is my favorite part of being a musician. Yes, it's therapeutic for me, but I also love sharing my passion for music with other people. It's so neat that your audience responded so well to your shows this must be so rewarding to experience that! :-)


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