I have been making music with my guitar since I turned 50 and went to see David Broza in concert. We sat and watched him make love to his guitar and I sat in my seat watching my fingers begin their journey to find comfort on strings.
By that next summer I had my first guitar and a teacher. Soon I had a real teacher and a better guitar, a classical guitar with nylon strings and I was working hard, trying to make music. I wasn’t there yet, but I was willing to keep at it. I loved my teacher and while his passion was for classical music, he was open to challenging me with any style I wanted to try: Dylan, the Beatles, anything.
I worked hard. It was harder than I thought it would be when I sat watching David Broza make love with his guitar. I had patience. Down the road, maybe into the second year, when my passion for the Spanish sound led me to listening to Segovia and focusing more and more of my time on classical pieces, John hinted that he would be giving up his guitar teaching and began to transition me to a new teacher who was completely passionate about classical guitar. I was sad about ending our teacher/student relationship but open to work with his best friend who was also a Jon.
Jonathan is passionate about his music and only taught classical guitar and that was fine with me. I had also made the commitment and for the last 5 years I have been working with Jon and practicing almost every day and loving the challenge. I feel a connection to the great classical guitarists when I try and play their music, when I watch them in concert and even though I don’t sound exactly like them, I feel a unique connection with each one.
For the last year, I have been wondering where I am with my guitar. I have an excellent 3rd guitar now. I have been working as hard as usual and feeling my passion as I play but I guess I want it to be easier. I want to pick up a guitar and just noodle around on it. I want the guitar to be a more social experience. At this point I can’t work on a piece without Jon’s help. Each measure is a mine field.
So, on Tuesday when Jon arrives for my lesson, back from our summer break , I will probably feel worse than he will about talking about moving away from just classical guitar and lessons with him. I have been agonizing about this decision all weekend.
One thing’s for sure, I love playing guitar. I love music and want a challenge I can master and for sure, classical music is a mountain to climb and I still have a fear of heights.
I can cheerfully report that life still has its surprises. I am beginning to move into the rock world with Fleetwood Mac’s Landslide, an all-time favorite and I’m doing it with Jon who loves it as well. I’m sticking with classical for now and with Jon and I feel great about it. I’m not good at abrupt change, is anyone?