first rehearsal

I love this town.
(My photo. Not my band.)

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me: So, how do we do this?
J: I don’t have any charts for you – how about I just start playing and you can learn the songs and start singing harmonies?
me: Ummm…I’m not sure I can do that. Just start making up harmonies on command? I don’t even know the songs. (I barely even know YOU! What are we DOING here?)

So he plays the first song. I listen. He watches me for a reaction. I try to figure out how I’m supposed to react. I like the song, and I try to remember to say that out loud, but I’m also listening intensely, trying to hear obvious harmonies, trying to learn the structure of the song, seeking out lyrics that are particularly striking which should be emphasized…but mostly feeling incredibly out of my element.

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(My photo. Not my band.)

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J: Why are you making that weird face?
me: Was I making a weird face? What were you doing? I can’t remember what I was thinking!
J: Hmmm…
me: How about you play that song again. And…I’ll try to sing it with you? Is that what you want? Do you want me to just sing the melody? Are there any harmonies you have in mind? (If this song were a color, what would it be? WHAT’S MY MOTIVATION?)

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(My photo. Not my band.)

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All singer/songwriters are incredibly vulnerable, right? I mean, the act of sharing a song – something that you’ve crafted with word and tune and rhythm and lilt – and asking someone else to participate or pass judgment…this is bravery. This is creation. This is…the sort of thing that freaks me out a little.

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