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(@chris-c)
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Joined: 17 years ago
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Hi all,

Are any of you lucky enough to belong to musical families? My mother was fond of classical music and gave me a good introduction to it, via a gramophone. But nobody in our family played an instrument, not even the uncle and aunts or grandparents.

My wife loves listening to music, and is also very supportive of my weird interest in meddling with musical instruments, but I can't persuade her to attempt to play anything.

She likes the look of guitars and enjoys having a few hung on the wall. But I didn't realise quite how little interest she really took in them until a couple of days ago when she asked me “What's the ‘stalk' part on a guitar called?”

Stalk!??? It turned out to be the neck.

Do any of you have partners/brothers/sisters/girlfriends/boyfriends/children or whoever that you can jam along with?

Cheers,

Chris


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(@scrogdog)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 95
 

My dad plays as does one of my brothers. My dad is quite talented, in fact. He's got a good singing voice, plays a chromatic harmonica very well, and he's probably the best whistler I've ever heard. :)

Good thing too. A few years back it became clear that staying at the house I grew up in was getting too much for my parents, so they sold it and moved in to a retirement community called Brooksby Village. Great place and it IS a community. They even have thier own TV station for the residents.

But going in,my dad wondered what he would do there. He was the type always putzing around the yard, fixing this and painting that. He feared boredom.

My dad is now in at least 3 bands... one of them a barbershop quartet, and he also does his own show. He also plays wandering minstrel for folks in the on-site hospital. He does music for the TV station. In short, he's one of the busiest residents there! So much for boredom!

He asked to borrow my bass last week. While I was bringing it in I had several comments like;

Have you come to play for us?

No, but my dad Chet will play for you.

Chet? (eyes glaze over)

The singing guitar-playing harmonica guy.

Oh yes him! He's wonderful.

:)

One of these days I am going to perform a couple of songs with my dad at one of his shows. The idea is there, but I'm in my busy season at work through the end of the year. Hopefully sometime soon after that. That will be so cool.


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(@chris-c)
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Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 3460
Topic starter  

Great story. 8)

You're a lucky guy Scrogdog - can I borrow your Dad?

I can't get so much as a whistle out of my father. Still, I suppose he has a pretty cast iron excuse, given that he died fifteen years ago.. I do have a friend who runs a music shop in the nearby town, so I can drop in there and find somebody to strum along with, but it would be neat to have somebody in the family who I could team up with occasionally.

Cheers,

Chris


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(@scrogdog)
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Joined: 18 years ago
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I'm pretty proud of him. He was the type that only played in front of a small circle of friends before he retired. Everyone always told him that he was good, but he didn't put much stock in reviews by his friends and family.

Then, all of a sudden, he was playing in a real band with other musicians in front of a fairly hefty audience. It took him a bit to develop a stage presence and a comfort zone, but to see him now you'd think he was doing it all his life.

My dad is self-taught and one of the guys he is in all of these bands with was a music teacher in his former life. To have that guy tell my dad that he was a natural was a huge boost to him.


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(@alangreen)
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Joined: 20 years ago
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My mum used to play the piano, but she gave up before I was born. My dad was tone deaf, but his parents had a piano.

My eldest son plays piano, guitar and bass. He's pretty useful.

Best,

A :-)

"Be good at what you can do" - Fingerbanger"
I have always felt that it is better to do what is beautiful than what is 'right'" - Eliot Fisk
Wedding music and guitar lessons in Essex. Listen at: http://www.rollmopmusic.co.uk


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(@causnorign)
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Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 559
 

My niece played cello in high school, my step-daughter and son both played flute in school. Alas they all stopped playing :(


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(@noteboat)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 4933
 

My parents were fond of music, but weren't musicians. I had a great-aunt who played piano, but that was the only musical relative, so I was pretty much the first.

But I guess I set a good example - not only are both my kids musicians (one is aiming for a career as a film composer) all of my nieces and nephews play something; one is already building a career in concert promotion.

And my Mom finally started taking piano lessons in her 70s :)

Guitar teacher offering lessons in Plainfield IL


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(@ricochet)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 7850
 

My mom sang to me when I was little, had a piano she played now and then, and used to go around annoyingly whistling and singing song fragments. My sister was an avid singer who probably would've been Miss Alabama in the early '60s had she not come down with strep throat on the night of the finals with singing as her talent. My brother's a trumpet player. My kids were both really good on piano, but neither's playing that now. My daughter can sing well, but won't. My son's a terrific guitar player, way better than I am.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


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(@katmetal)
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Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 727
 

She likes the look of guitars and enjoys having a few hung on the wall. But I didn't realise quite how little interest she really took in them until a couple of days ago when she asked me “What's the ‘stalk' part on a guitar called?” I believe your wife & mine are sisters!


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(@hyperborea)
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Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 833
 

Hmmm, let's see. My dad can sing quite well and he's a great whistler too. His brother used to be a very good accordion player but can't play much anymore due to arthritis. My grandfather on my mother's side was supposedly a good haramonica player (chromatic) but he died when I was very young so I never heard him play.

My wife plays the piano though she hasn't played in a while - she's had too many other commitments that use up her time and she has another hobby that she values above playing the piano. It would be nice if she were to get back into playing so that we could play together.

My nephew has taken up the guitar and we played together the last time I visited him and my sister. I think he started because of my influence.

Pop music is about stealing pocket money from children. - Ian Anderson


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 Nuno
(@nuno)
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No, nobody plays. My father listen a lot of classical music but he is also tone deaf. Mother, sister, nephews, brother-in-law, cousins, uncles, aunts...

However, everybody plays at least one instrument in my GN family!


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(@chris-c)
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Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 3460
Topic starter  

Thanks for all the replies.

It sounds like it's quite a mixed bag, with not many families really jamming away together on a regular basis. I used to hear stories that many families, a few generations back, used to regular sing around the 'parlour piano' or play together. But I'm not sure how widespread it was in fact.

However, everybody plays at least one instrument in my GN family!

Good point Nuno! :D

I was just about to give Madonna a call and see if she could advise me about going to Africa to adopt a rhythm section... but you've put it back into perspective for me.

On a side note. I dropped into the nearby music shop today and listened in to a local musician - a big bearded bear of a guy - giving a teenage lad a banjo lesson. He was doing a great job of teaching, and had the lad playing along with him with plenty of confidence. He was stressing the need to practice, and said:

"When you practice and practice there will be times when people say to you 'Hey! Can't you stop playing that banjo?!!!' Just remember that the answer is NO! You're a banjo player now and it's all good. You'll cop a few joke about hillbillies and so on, but you'll ignore them. You've got a natural feel for the instrument ...." and so on.... The boy walked out of the lessons about three inches taller than when he walked in. It was an absolute delight to listen to.

I think it's time I signed up for some more lessons. :)

Cheers,

Chris


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(@dan-t)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5072
 

I had a Great-Uncle who was a pretty succesful big band leader. I was named after him too.

My son plays guitar, bass, flute, trumpet, and just about any kind of percussive instrument around, (he has a great sense of rhythym). Way more musical than me, (he can even read sheet music!), and he's only 12. I'm very proud of him. :D

Dan

"The only way I know that guarantees no mistakes is not to play and that's simply not an option". David Hodge


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(@boogie)
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Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 467
 

My sister is the most musical person in our family. I know she does play piano & violin. I think she might also have dabbled or played flute, sax & clarinet. And she's got a beautiful voice. Actually, she has made performing arts her career. She has done directing, set & costume design, production as well as performing. Unfortunately she lives quite a distance from me so no opportunities to jam together.

Then comes my brother. He used to play guitar and then dabbled in piano. He was in a band in the 1960s that was fairly successful on a local level. I still remember their name: The Raspberry Jam Band :D He does not play piano much anymore. Also, he lives quite a distance away.

So on to my immediate family:

My 12 year old son took guitar lessons for about 1.5 years, but stopped earlier this year to focus on his fencing (yup, with foils and epees). He likes a lot of music I listen to, so we used to jam from time to time and still do, but not as often as I would like. He's got a natural talent (actually he used to make me a bit jealous it seemed to come so easy to him), but he loves fencing more. I have noticed recently he's been picking up his guitars more frequently,

And finally, my younger daughter (14 years old) has been taking guitar lessons with the same instructor as me. We don't jam, though we did perform a song together for our 'music school'. Her musical tastes are pretty different from mine and does not really like the blues and rock I'm into.

My wife and older daughter (16) don't play instruments, but like to listen to music.


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(@musica23)
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Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 278
 

My maternal grandfather played piano (as did my uncle) back when I was a child. I took lessons for about 1 1/2 years (mostly for my Grandpa's sake) but quit as I didn't like classical then (The Beatles were just emerging!). He was heartbroken. Anyway, that was many, many moons ago and I am now on my own!

My parents are both deceased (neither played an instrument, but both enjoyed listening to music...my mom loved Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass!). I have no siblings, no children, and a husband who played piano, guitar and sang before I met him! (Or so he says... Just kidding!). It's odd, but he's the one who got me started back on guitar by going out and impulsively buying a drumkit last August!!! However, he "never has time" to play it, a violin he also bought, or anything else musical. Of course, he really does have time, but evidently doesn't have the interest that I have. Hence, we plan many a jam session that never actually transpire. :( We play different types of music anyway, I guess, so maybe that's the problem.

I also have no jamming buddies. I've only lived in Michigan for 7 years now, but I doubt I'd know anyone even if I still lived in Ohio! So there, Chris, is my sad tale of woe. :(
Chris C. also wrote:
I think it's time I signed up for some more lessons. :)

I can tell you, Chris, that I'd be lost without my guitar teacher, the main reason being that I'd have far less motivation/encouragement. It doesn't hurt, either, that I actually learn some stuff from him!

Your story about the banjo teacher and his student could just as well be about my guitar "dude" and me. Some folks are self-motivated and brimming with self-confidence, I guess, but I'm not one of them! I'm especially needy in the area of inexact science (i.e., guitar playing). While my husband says I'm good, what does that mean and how does he know??? No offense to him, of course, but I'm afraid his opinions of my musical abilities matter less to me than those of a fellow music junkie! For that reason, taking lessons is crucial for me (I get lots of confidence and kicks in the rear, too!). And I'd also like to echo Nuno's sentiment about my fellow GN frequenters. :D

P.S. I've never had much luck with a maple stalkboard, but am planning to purchase a Tele with one whenever I'm allowed. (It's a woman thing. )

Love and Peace or Else,
CC


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