Friday, August 7, 2009

My New Candy

After our first performance, I sense that our band is more committed to me as the singer. It was, in essence, a test. And I think - I hope! - that I passed.

Practice last night was not the usual. Well, for one thing, I shared a song with the band that I wrote, called Wishing on a Star.

I am getting the shakes just thinking about it.

It was the most terrifying - and wonderful - experience I have ever had, musically.

After the band warmed up with Big Me, L picked my song to practice next. (That is what we do, we go around and take turns picking a song to practice.) No more hiding my light under a bushel! So I took out my acoustic guitar and strummed the first chord.

I could practically hear them all wince, the chord did not sound like an "E". I felt so mortified (My guitar was a cheap purchase I made early on for guitar lessons, when I was pregnant with my boy, so that is what, oh 11 years ago?).

L tuned my guitar, but it still had "issues". So I asked if I could borrow L's red electric guitar. The worried expression on his face was funny. He handed it to me with the charge to take care of his "baby".

I've always thought an electric guitar is smaller and easier to cradle -and it is - but I didn't expect it to be so heavy! I sat down on a stool, crossed my legs and tried to not drop the thing.

I strummed the first chords - okay, much better! - and the band came alive around me. D got a good beat going, the "samba" beat I envisioned, the others followed along well. It was hard to sing and play the guitar (half-falling off my lap) at the same time, but somehow I managed.

After the first run through, I sat there waiting for the verdict. I told them I welcomed any suggestions. As an artist - music or words - I am open to feedback and would have taken any bad news like a big girl, but honestly my ego was fragile at this point. R said my song was "pretty" and he liked it. And the others didn't seem to think - at least judging from their expressions - it was too sappy for the band. So I was grateful for them treating me with kindness.

I handed back L's guitar, and they played while I sang two versions in different keys. The lower one sounds more R&B, but the higher one is easier for me to sing and to make pretty. I will listen to both versions on our recording and decide which one is better.

Wishing on a Star is definitely a sappy love song, but infused with my band's soft rock tempo, I thought it sounded upbeat.

R said it is better than my first one. He was referring to my earlier tongue-in-cheek attempt at composing a band song which was inspired by Dr. Seuss' Fox in Socks.

Writing the lyrics to Wishing on a Star was cathartic. Coming up with a melody was a marvel. Figuring out chords was fun.

But hearing it all come together - like a real song - in a band session. Wow! It is just simply amazing.

I am just blessed, so blessed to have this creative opportunity with a really good group of musicians with good hearts.

I have found my new candy.


Melanie Avila said...

That is so cool! I'm glad they're so open to you and your ideas.

I once had a friend put music to a poem I wrote, then me and several friends sang it in his living room. That was a wild experience. :)

Pink Ink said...

Yeah, it is cool :-).

And I keep thinking, now Jewel, you are a writer, you should be able to *write* a that is why I like doing this.