Guitar

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Publicizing my goals

Friday, August 22nd, 2008

I woke up late again. Therefore, it is a “lick my palms and smooth my hair in my reflection in the microwave door” kind of morning. I suspect that whenever I think back and remember working an 8-5 desk job in Nashville, the words “not” and “cute” will be associated with my appearance. It’s just too early.

I’m taking a wee break from playing writer’s nights in order to work on my guitar skills. Being self-taught up to this point, I decided that lessons would be a worthy investment, so I had my first guitar lesson last night. I had visions of walking in, telling my teacher exactly what I wanted to learn, and walking out Slash – but of course, it doesn’t work that way. I have been doing music long enough to know that you have to start with the basics in order to have the capacity to improvise or extemporize or appear effortlessly versatile – and never having gotten the basics in the beginning, I have a lot of back-tracking to do.

But mixed in with the C-scales and proper posture and music theory, there is a bright and shining light. At some point in the hopefully not-too-distant future, I will be flawlessly playing the opening lick to “Pretty Woman.”

Can you say party trick?

I spent two hours practicing last night, reminded of the hopeful, burgeoning feeling that used to occur for me at the beginning of each school year. A fresh start! A new resolve! The possibilities! I’m going to master this! Nothing can stop me! I am disciplined! I am capable! “This is my nooooooow…!”

I wish that I could bottle that feeling. Eventually, it always fades, and I fall back into the darkness of passivity and lethargy. It’s why I have never yet run a half-marathon – a long-time goal of mine – it just seems too hard. Too far. Too much. I honestly do not believe that I can do it.

Which is why I have to do it.

Consider this my formal announcement that on April 25, 2009, I will be running the Country Music Half-Marathon. If I say it on the blog, then I have to do it, right? And this gives me plenty of time to, you know, become a runner.

And hopefully before that, a “Pretty Woman” guitar player.

“You’re the…”

Friday, July 11th, 2008

The deed is done – I made it through my first writer’s round without a) train-wrecking, or b) crying. I had about 10 friends who made it out, which meant so much, especially since I still call myself “new to Nashville” – thanks to those of you who came. I was lucky enough to share the stage with Matt Dorrien and Chris Moynihan, who are both great writers and actually know how to play the guitar. True to my word, I was not perfect – but it was fun, I played my 3 songs, and when I smiled, I meant it.

And I NEVER HAVE TO PLAY MY FIRST SHOW IN NASHVILLE AGAIN!

A potentially-embarrassing-yet-ultimately-hysterical moment:

My parents sent me flowers. Yes, to the bar. Like, “Oh, you’re Annie Parsons? We have a special delivery for you! Let me bring it over to your table! In front of all of these people!”

At first, I felt my face burning up – but then I ripped open the card:


From the reverend and his lovely wife. Are they hilarious or what? (Note: for full context, read this.) Thanks to Erin, Casey, and my mother for unwittingly collaborating to coin the new “Go get ‘em.” The best part of this story is the thought of my mom on the phone with some Nashville florist, saying, “Yes, I’d like the card to read… ‘You’re the shit.’ Yes. Yes, ‘the shit.’ S-H-I-T.”

Thankful

Saturday, November 24th, 2007

Well, hello, pretties. Were you beginning to think I had abandoned you?

Never.

My deepest apologies for taking a few days off from blogdom. The Giving of Thanks took up much of the last couple of days. My holiday can be summed up as thus: all 9 members of my immediate family in my parent’s Kansas City house, plus my dear friends Mary and Rebekah in from Seattle and Omaha, respectively. We ate, drank, and were merry. We watched movies. We played with the little guys, the nephews. We shopped. We walked. We had a cheese plate THREE DAYS IN A ROW.

But now, on to today’s big event.

Throughout my life, I have had a wish list of a few things that I hope to someday – someday – purchase. It has been a long-shot of a list, which in the past has included things like a computer (check), a set of sharp knives (check), and a pair of black leather boots (oh yeah). I have taken a painfully long time to save up for those purchases, and have never regretted the money spent. Still on the list is a digital SLR and a Mazda 3. But today, my wish list has gotten just a little bit shorter, because…

I bought a Martin guitar.

And you guys? It is gorgeous. A spruce top, rosewood backing and sides, mahogany neck, and ebony fretboard. The sound is crisp and punchy and full and bright, and the inside of the case is that classic Martin green. I form a chord with my left hand, and strum with my right, and the sound that happens is downright musical.

What have I ever done to deserve the many, many gifts that I have been given? I’ll never know. But I do know that I am thankful, and that I’ll need to get to work to make myself worthy of this Martin. Let the guitar practice begin.