Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Music is what feelings sound like

yesterday was a bit of a blur. again, i blame the inattentive baristas at starbucks for juicing my latte when i specifically asked for decaf. customer service skills, people! learn them.

so after getting very little sleep, i managed to drag myself out to volunteer. i'd been playing hooky for a few weeks; it was good to see familiar faces again. whenever i go, i wear my same old adidas military cap (it beats the lunch lady hairnet) and every time pauline, another volunteer, asks me, "what branch of the military are you in?" she's not all there, but she faithfully serves every week.

after a necessary cat nap in my car, i managed to stay up late enough to hit a show at a jazz club. a kid i know from youth group is in a jazz school big band. i know, expectations may be low for teenagers playing jazz, but this kids are on a whole other talent level. seriously.

you'd walk by these kids in their street clothes and have no idea how much they rock. watch them slouch out on stage in oversize suits because they are growing like weeds, squinting a big in the glare of the stage lights and you'd still wonder what was going to happen once they start playing. and then these 15 or so gangly kids with hair drooping in their eyes begin their first piece and cease being 15 individuals, but a one organism with 30 hands and 30 lungs that breathe as one and create some amazing sound. it is SO MUCH FUN to see this transformation. to see kids this focused, this poised and really loving what they are doing and doing well (this band being on top of whatever school bands they are in, private music lessons, and the high-powered-dryer-tumbling load of regular stuff that constitutes their day-to-day lives). that's why i rarely miss an invitation to see these kids play. it's just not something you see that often.

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