This is the first week that I have felt truly at home here. I think it's because it was jam-packed with rehearsals, a session, and a performance, with one more to come. Life is returning to normal--no sleep, lots of music, lots of coffee, and new friends to mark the occasion.
Tony Reedus died this week, and while I regret saying that I was not too familiar with his playing, in doing some reading about him I'm sorry that I didn't get to meet the guy. A reporter quoted him as saying, ""When people come to see you play, they want to escape, they want to feel good. Music is a celebration of life that comes from the heart." I think I could have shared many a beer tab with Tony.
I think about this concept a lot, about why we play music and why people come to hear live music. For me, it is an escape, both as a player and a listener. There's a secret place that all musicians and avid listeners have been to at least once, or at least, know exists (otherwise they would not try so hard to get there), where the world is perfect and beautiful and passionate and impenetrably safe. Every time I pick up my horn I am trying to find the path back to that place. I consider myself extremely fortunate to find that fortress quite often, and while the path doesn't get any more familiar, my trust in the fact that the path exists grows stronger every day because somehow I keep finding my way there.
I suppose it's a kind of faith. But using that word opens up a can of worms that has been opened too often by too many people. So let's use the word trust, instead. I play music because it strengthens my trust in the fact that there is unspeakable beauty and passion in this world.