Oct 24, 2016

Morning. Unwanted. Pt 3

All sound comes from vibration and that only comes from tension. 

Even then, sitting in the dark of the stage while the rest of the band milled about the amps and cables, our tour manager talking to the club about merch, I set to put on a new set of strings.

There was tension.

Every time I change a string, I feel the tension. The resistance.
I don't know why I get anxious about it...

There was very little light on the stage. And darkness everywhere else. I was thinking of words. Words I had last night when I was alone that left me now. So I turned the strings.

I  like to start on the heaviest string. The E. Sliding through the body, pulling it over the bridge, the slide of steel as it passes, reaches up to tuner, catching on in a turn. Then I move to the lightest one, on a bass that's a G. Then fill in the A. And last the D.

It's the way I learned it from violin. I was probably 5 when I tried to string up my instructors violin. He had me practice on his. That made me even more nervous especially since he didn't talk as I carefully went through the directions he told me the week before.
Start at the lowest. Align the string. Careful not to move the bridge, which is a disaster on the violin, tighten slowly.

"Very slowly," my instructor cautioned, with the first word spoken in 5 mins, "you wouldn't want the string to break and cut back at you." He whipped his finger up to his eye.

Now slower than before, I tightened.

It doesn't take long for a strong to get enough tension to make a sound. The lower the tension the bigger the vibration and the sound stays low.  The more you tighten,  the higher the sound gets.  It's all very simple.




But even simpler to understand: too much tension and everything breaks.

"Are we ready for sound check?" I asked only to be met with a shoulder shrug.

The last part of changing strings, cutting off the ends to make it look nice. Four silver tines. Pointed up to the stage lights. Newly stretched and wound and bent. They came out of the headstock. With a set of wire cutters I snipped off each one. Listening to them rattle and bounce as they hit the floor of the stage.

It's a terrible feeling waiting for the snap.

Always makes me anxious.

to be cont.


ps. as always like, share, subscribe and if you want to talk you can reach me on this blog, youtubefacebook and twitter

mood: Hiroshi Suzuki - Cat

Oct 6, 2016

Morning. Unwanted.

The sun was already 3 hours in the sky, and still only a few noises were stirring. 

-Soon we'll be in the bus rushing out of here. I hope the drive is under 4.

I was already thinking about tomorrow. I'm foolish that way. To let these moments go unappreciated. Somehow that day, kindly, I was brought back. Reminded of the importance of taking things in.

Still in a half-sleep, like my mind was still swimming in melatonin. 

My moves were clumsy. My thoughts slow. And the world seemed with me.

We yearned for stillness. To return to quietness. But morning has a way of announcing itself. Unwanted.

I couldn't tell you specifically what woke me up. Maybe it was a smell lingering on my shirt lifted by the morning breeze? Maybe it was a laugh from the tent next to me as another festival goer began waking up? Maybe it was the squeak of a bird, or the revving of an engine.

Setting my boots to the side of my tent I stretched out my body over dirt, cool and tender. Letting my feet press into the few patches of grass left standing. And looking at the hundreds of tents around me I was hit with a memory. A flash of the night before. Like a dream, I was

Under a string of red and blue lights. Swinging back and forth. Lights.  One strand over the whole tent.

Keeping its own movement over a thousand voice chant over the pulse of bass.



As the bodies moved in together. Closer to the stage. Closer. The breath. The heat.

I felt the sun on my bare feet, over my arms radiating into my chest and remembered feeling the heat.

But I had only noticed it when...

A cold touch of skin. Hands and arms. Flashes of hair twirling as the lights turned from colors to White. A body and leather fringe spun away. Black.  The crowd moved together feeling through the dark. White again. And I'm near a tall blonde in leather. Then black again. Moving away.

From a tent two rows down I saw our tour manager Eva emerge. Stumbling with closing the zipper. She turned around and gave me look like. Let's move it along.

I hadn't used much since I was our here, so it was easy to pack up my bag again.

Clothes. Book. Deodorant. Shoes. Jacket. 

This bass.

My anchor.

Tethered me to the stage. Playing the notes from finger memory. My mind had left. There was just music. My body holding the bass, holding me to the song. Each note pulsed as I plucked. A wide vibration rung out into the sea of people.

My mind is in the sea. I, the maker of waves, thrown in the tide. Till security pulled me back. Grabbed by the collar. Pulled away from people. And back to the stage.

Eva comes by in sunglasses now. And coffee. Awake. Alert now.

-you ready Rene?

-as always

to be cont.


ps. as always like, share, subscribe and if you want to talk you can reach me on this blog, youtubefacebook and twitter

mood: Too Much Sorrow