Practice Plan, Week of 27 November 2022

With Thanksgiving AND getting a new puppy (longish story – maybe I’ll post about it sometime), I didn’t post (or make) either a practice plan or update videos. I did make it to Taborgrass, so had several new things to work on last week. The thing is, sometimes it ends up this way and practice isn’t that great for a week. We just pick up again this week.

Practice Plan for 27 November 2022

Lesson:

No lesson this week (was rescheduled to next week).

Playing With Others:

I didn’t make it out to play with others last week (we went to Washington to spend Thanksgiving with my parents – my mom has terminal cancer). I want to try to make it out to the old-time jam on Thursday, but we will see. Might be the Vancouver jam on Tuesday.

1) New Material

  • Chinquapin Hunting
  • Angeline the Baker
  • Squirrel Hunters

2) Developing Material

  • Bluebirds Are Singing for Me (words – always the words)
  • You Won’t be Satisfied that Way
  • Bury Me Beneath the Willow (Michael Daves class)
  • Road to Columbus (learning Bill Monroe break on “Kenny Baker Plays…”)
  • Cold Frosty Morn
  • Bill Cheathum
  • Cluck Red Hen
  • Goodbye Liza Jane
  • Old Joe Clark

3) Performance Material

  • Jenny Jenkins
  • Cindy
  • Make Me Down a Pallet

4) Techniques

  • Chord tone scales
  • Double stops (again, again, still)
  • Cross-picking Potatoes

5) Musicianship

  • Transposing (using the key signature spinner)
  • Standing while playing
  • Ear training
  • Transcribe (my own recording): Ricky Ricardo
  • Writing: Dollar Store Frankfurter

What I’m Listening To

Shopping the holiday sale on vinyl at MerchBar, and I came across the Longest Johns. They have a really neat sound.

I love this blacksmith shanty.
The harmonies on this arrangement of Wayfaring Stranger. 🥺

It won’t embed for some reason, but “Bones in the Ocean” is my favorite so far from these guys.

Practice Plan, Week of 13 November 2022

I know I got super excited about practicing the guitar when I made my practice plan last week, but ultimately that both muddied the entire plan AND was pointless because I am not and do not plan on being a guitarist. I would like to be a little better, but not nearly enough to do the work to become so.

As such, this week is a return to just a mandolin practice plan.

Practice Plan for 06 November 2022

Lesson:

No lesson this week. I moved to every-other-week lessons at the end of October.

Playing With Others:

Last week I went to the Wake Up Rounder jam at Tomorrow’s Verse. It was ok, but not quite my thing. This week is Taborgrass, so if I do go to a jam during the week it will just be supplemental.

1) New Material

  • Take a Sniff on Me (The Cocaine Song)
  • Amazing Grace (I just need to learn all tue words)
  • Cindy
  • Fare Thee Well, O Honey (Dink’s Song)
  • Cripple Creek
  • Bill Cheatham

2) Developing Material

  • Bluebirds Are Singing for Me
  • Bury Me Beneath the Willow
  • Road to Columbus

3) Performance Material

  • Jenny Jenkins
  • Clinch Mountain Backstep
  • Whiskey Before Breakfast

4) Techniques

  • LH position (Sill struggling with this, but could be cleared up once I have my forever mandolin)
  • Double stops (again)
  • Bluegrass box (exploring other solo shapes)

5) Musicianship

  • Transposing (using the key signature spinner)
  • Standing while playing
  • Ear training
  • Writing: Dollar Store Frankfurter

A Love Poem Is a Tricky Thing

Sometimes, when I a m not writing horrible bluegrass songs, I write poetry (although it has admittedly been a minute). Almost none of these have been seen beyond maybe a close friend or, as is the case with the poem here, the intended recipient. I wrote this poem for a former parter who had a profound impact on my life, and who I still feel deeply for, regardless of the way things turned out.

A Love Poem Is a Tricky Thing
December 2018

A love poem
Is a tricky thing.
For I am not the first to
Feel these feelings,
Or the first to search
The darkness of
The depths of the night
For Words precious enough
Or beautiful enough
To describe
This.
Whatever it is.

But I am the first me
To first love you,
To find the Words
To say.
Unless you count the other mes
And the other you
Across the Universes.
For surely this feeling
Is bigger than one life.
Is bigger than one Universe.

And just now,
Writing,
I found the Words
To describe the thing:
I love you,
So much that
Surely one life
And one Universe
Is much too small
To contain it.