There seems to come a moment, somewhere in the middle of each show that I play, where I have this moment of clarity about just how lucky I am to be able to do what I do. There is a great quote I heard once, though I don't recall the source, that went something like,
One of the best gifts that the English language has given musicians is to be able to call what we do 'playing.'
I am sure that some variation of that sentiment is probably true for just about anyone who is truly passionate about what they do, but when I find myself onstage, dug deep inside of a song, and I look up to see the enjoyment and joy on the faces of the audience, I truly feel that there must be nothing better. Music is universal. It's movement, it's pulses, it's tensions and releases, they speak to all of us and to what it means to live.
Last night found Shawn and I playing at a great venue in Hartford, CT that is not only an arts performance space, but a place too for people to get assistance training and finding employment, a place for people to eat a meal that comes directly from local farmer's fields, and a place for people to gather as a community in an area of the city that has felt more than most the challenges of modern life in the center of a struggling city. The fact that it is an arts venue that is an anchor for this new neighborhood approach I think is completely fitting.
Through the arts we share what it is to be human. We find common ground, beyond cultures, languages, and geography, where we can all meet, performers and audience alike, and can form community. I have been privileged to have had the arts feature so prominently in my life, and it is my wish for everyone that they may experience the same. So listen, watch, feel, taste...