As I went to open my case tonight I paused. This is not unusual for me, I frequently do this to check in with myself. Be it through following my breath, using the Alexander Technique directions, or reciting a gatha that came to me years back. I want to wake up and be present for the transition and the ensuing act of music. Tonight as I paused this haiku arrived:
Opening the case,
All possibilities are.
Now play the guitar.
Taking a few minutes to work with AT inhibition and direction, I then began to play Senseless Loss. Playing at a slower then the tempo I have been working with this piece at, I heard perhaps a more meaningful expression in the bass register. Pausing I decided to tape a slow take to listen to later. Since my Tuesday evening AT class with David Jernigan, I have let go of using the pic to play this tremolo piece and have begun to play it fingerstyle. This was David's suggestions as a possibility of the means-whereby to let go of end-gaining I was noticing in relation to this piece.
When I played this fingerstyle when I returned home that night I immediately found out I was able to play the piece at an increased tempo and with more accuracy. Yet there was en energy missing. It took me a while to realize that I may have been mistaking the intensity of effort with a musical quality being expressed. When in actuality the intensity that was now lacking appeared to have more to do with me tensing myself.
So tonight when I heard/felt increased expression in the slower take I wondered why? Was it purely musical or a result of less effort to play. I increased the tempo and something was missing. Alternating between slow and faster passages of a section of the piece, I arrived at perhaps a middle ground. As I played faster both the attack of my thumb and my fingers were louder. What if I lessened the attack of the thumb for a softer timbre while playing at the faster tempo? There was something musical about this combination so I will continue to pursue this tomorrow.
There truly is a universe of possibilities before any of us, in any of our pursuits. We just need to begin and allow them to manifest. Is your case open?