Friday, December 11, 2009

Music and me

There are two times a year I really miss playing my instrument(s). This is one of them.

For those of you who don't know, I was a huge band nerd. (Oh come on, you're not really that surprised are you?) I played flute from the time I was in fourth grade until, well, I graduated college. I guess you could say I'm still a flute player, but the fact is I haven't picked up my flute or piccolo for any extended period of time since 2004. Once I got into high school, I still enjoyed flute, but I really excelled at piccolo, apparently having a knack for playing in tune (very, very important for a piccolo) and not blowing people's ears out. In fact, my band teacher once told me I was the only piccolo player he'd ever had to tell to play louder. And this man had been directing bands for years and years, so that's really saying something. But at any rate, I LOVED the piccolo and preferred it to flute. (Especially in marching band, where I'd rather hold a piccolo than any other instrument. Whether that's because it was small and light or I could command a football field with my presence, I'll let you decide.)

I often wish I would get back to playing, but the truth is, living in apartments and having a wacky work schedule just hasn't really lent itself to it. But Christmas is one of those times when I really wish I still played. And there's one song that always does it. Any guesses?

I wanted to find the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra in a nod to the late Erich Kunzel, but Boston Pops will have to do.

There isn't a particular part I love in this song, aside from the jazz section, but the whole thing is fun to play, and was a tradition at Christmas concerts in high school. I've loved it ever since.

So I guess you want to know the other time of the year when I miss playing, don't you? Geez, so demanding, aren't you? Well, here you go. Probably the best. piccolo. part. EVER.

(You can listen to the whole thing, but the part in question is just after the 2-minute mark, and again at 2:56, which, in my opinion, is even better than the first time around.)

There, now don't you feel like putting some red white and blue on your Christmas tree?


J. et K. said...

Until this post, my only (and I mean only) reference for a pic-let me check the spelling-colo was the Dixie Chicks song 'Traveling Soldier'. So am feeling quite enlightened.

Jean said...

I always see you when I hear these two pieces - I hope you do get to play again someday.

dScott said...

Absolutely great post!

Piccolo may be your absolute favorite, but you also did rather well with flute. Remember learning about jazz with Silent Night? Or how about playing in Cambridge for John Rutter and at St Martin in the Field?

When the time is right, you're ready. As the angel said, "Be not afraid."

Quid said...

I'm chiming in terribly late here (have been away from internet since Friday (!!)), but just wanted to say that this is such a fun post! I'm not sure I would have even known a piccolo if I had ever heard one. Such great songs, though! Puts me in the holiday spirit (well, the first one that is ;)