Fatigue threatens opera outing
Minor setbacks overshadowed by another WIN

Double Bass - getting in the mood

Double bassWith barely two weeks to go before we leave for Greece, my double bass has been cocooned in its case since I started treatment 35 weeks ago (with a couple a exceptions). An attempt to play in a Beethoven 9th weekend just after Christmas proved too much for my ailing body. The other around the same time was to demonstrate the instrument to a four-year-old grandson. I just lacked the energy to hold the instrument, and the bow, read the notes, and reproduce them on the strings. Might sound silly, but that's the way it's been until today. I had hoped to start yesterday, but that wave of fatigue did for me. Today was different. I won't claim to have been full of beans, but there was a little something at work. So I unzipped the case, took out the beast and set up to practice. That involves getting a high stool, music, music stand and rosin. The bow needed tightening up, then I applied some rosin - that helps make a note as the bow crosses the string. Then there is the question of whether the strings are in tune. Elephants Always Drink Gin I was taught - the intial letters are the notes of the open strings on the instrument. As you all know there is an app for nearly everything, and that is certainly the case for tuning. For our music school the first batch of music has already been sent and printed out. I managed two 10-minute sessions. The first was quite painful, not just to me ear, but my left shoulder protested at having to support the weight. So as with my gardening I took a rest, and had another go. As a sign of good intent I loosened my bow and left the instrument out. Tomorrow, it will be scales. Atuning my ear to the notes is like listening to other bodily functions, just easier to talk about. As for those other functions, we were able to get out to that family function this evening without difficulties. With regards to that other 'event', I can honestly say I didn't see a thing, except for a truncated flypast of helicopters and the Red Arrows which screamed over the Barbican en route to a palace south-west of where we live.

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