In one season of the hit television series Desperate Housewives, some of the male characters get together to play music by forming a band that becomes their leisure activity. My favorite character happened to be the lead guitarist (and he played a Fender Stratocaster in the series). So I empathized and found it very likable. It’s a shame that the writers had thought of this little act to make the members of the group look like immature children who had not yet left their adolescence behind.
If my two and a half readers have followed my posts about turntable cartridges, they will have found them rather erratic. In one of them I admitted complete confusion. There are reasons to that. The first one is I had changed integrated amplifier, speaker cables and listening room in a short time period. I lost control on my overall sound so I was not sure what was going on. My few readers would know I am fond of Grado cartridges and the way the company is family-run in the old legendary labs in Brooklyn, NY. But I had some misfortune with my Grado styli and broke the two I had just when I had lost my job and could not spend money on that stuff. Something happened in that period that made me think twice about my favorite brand and caused some confusion in what I believed were my tastes. I found a Shure cart for free from a broken turnable.
Music has always been fundamental to me. It’s the only art form that grabs me from within and shakes my being. Or at least it’s the only one I’m really in deep contact with. I’ve never created music. Maybe I don’t think I’m up to it, maybe it’s because I always feel like what would come out of me would be less appealing than what I listen to anyway. I play guitar in a band that does covers of rock songs by various authors. Ever since I was a kid I used to sing by memorizing the lyrics from the radio. When I memorized my first tune I was not yet in school. From the first year of school I remember that I used to play the same single 45 rpm record over and over again on one of my uncle’s portable turntable. I kept learning Italian melodic tunes. This is what radio and TV were offering at the time. My parents weren’t very musical, they didn’t listen to anything in particular. I only had the Hit Parade on the radio and it was almost all melodic Italian music. That was what I had and that was what I sang. Immediately my sister, two years younger, followed in my footsteps.
Anyone can buy a guitar, get some practice (Youtube would be enough), take some lessons or advice from someone who already plays and then say “I play guitar”. That’s what I did. An uncle gave my sister and me his guitar when we were 9 and 11 respectively. We experimented based on the first chords our uncle gave us. And we moved on. I in particular focused on being a guitarist, learning solos as well. Then when I was 16 the electric guitar arrived and by the time I was 20 we had a small band playing the songs of our heroes in the rehearsal rooms. When people say “I play guitar” it doesn’t mean much. I’ve always said that about myself – I play guitar – but what does it really mean? Do I play it alone? In a band? Do I perform publicly or do I play at home sitting on the couch? Even a professional can claim “I play guitar”. It only takes a small-time professional to humiliate someone like me who plays in his spare time. But there are also non-professionals with killer technique. The vast majority have not become famous, not even those who make a living from guitar.
HiFi? And who listens to music anymore with two well-placed speakers and a system with separate components? Stream in earbuds and go!
The electric guitar is no longer the star of music, the cool “musician” dances and makes a scene, he certainly can’t play. Young people do not sacrifice themselves to learn an instrument….
Computers are very up-to-date but the Internet is not what it used to be, computer literacy is not needed since a PC is used for social activities and gaming.
Geology? And what is it? Is it useful? I graduated in it and ended up doing another job myself. Geology is not duly considered among the sciences. It’s a big mistake but it continues to be ignored;
Photography? Film? No way! A smartphone is enough, what do we care about exposure latitude and field depth!
Cars with a certain character? Mah … the German stereotype = cool goes for the most. Instead, the made in Italy would deserve but … who believes it except me?
Aikido! Art of harmony? But I want to fight, otherwise what is the point of a martial art? The streets are dangerous and I need to defend myself: MMA and BJJ!
They may be lost causes but I enjoy them…and I let off steam! It all started with the curiosity of understanding how a website works. Then it got into my head and grew over the years. It’s something I do for myself, aware of the fact that maybe nobody reads me. If someone will find useful the things they read here, I’ll be the happiest blogger on the internet… 😉