Just a few days ago, I put the guitar aside.
I have a ton of writing to do. People use the expression “I’m going in nine directions at once.” Well, my work is literally going in nine different directions! That doesn’t leave a lot of time for sitting casually and playing my guitars, even as the hang on my wall and taunt me.
It was tough to accept, I decided, but that part of me would have to wait.
Well, I changed my mind.
In the mail yesterday arrived a wonderful book of transcriptions from King Crimon’s 80’s incarnation, which is without a doubt my absolute favorite. When I ordered the book, I had thoughts about how wonderful it would be to slowly work my way through several songs, ultimately giving me a chance to play along with the records. (I have no desire whatsoever to form or join a band to play these tunes on stage. I cover the Greek tragedy that was my band in my book, and I have no desire to relive that experience.)
The book was meticulously assembled by Trey Gunn (former Crimson Warr guitarist) and Gabriel Riccio and proofread by Matt Tate, Dean Pascarella, and Anthony Garone. It is designed for both those who can read music (it is brilliantly notated) and those who cannot (with equally brilliant tabulature). The very look of it got me excited about the idea of learning these songs.
But something else spurred me to push forward with my playing, and that came in the form of T.J. DuPree.
T.J. was my best friend in the police academy. We bonded over music, specifically Frank Zappa and King Crimson. His story (which just happened to coincide with the return of the Crim in the mid-90’s) is also documented in my book. No need to repeat it here.
The point is, T.J. would NEVER let me get away with putting this book aside, regardless of how busy I am with other things. “Here’s the chance to learn all the songs you’ve loved for 40 years,” he would tell me. “There’s NO way you just let that book gather dust!” And he would’ve been right. T.J. may have passed away a few years ago, but his spirit remains with me, and I feel it every day.
So I guess I’ll be playing my guitar more after all. It will be challenging. It will be time-consuming. It will be eye-opening. But most of all, it will be fun!
And just like that, I was motivated again. Let’s DO this!
You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (cirdecsongs) My book, I Can’t Be the Only One Hearing This: A Lifetime of Music Through Eclectic Ears, is available from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other fine book dealers. I’m currently working on my next book, The Wizard of WOO: The Life and Music of Bernie Worrell
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