Posted on April 29th, 2013 | by Leslie

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Multi-tasking

I bill myself as the “girl and her piano, with multiple music personalities” because truly, that’s what I am.  I stand and I play behind that keyboard, behind that mic, beneath my red hair, but still I wonder who I really am as a performer.

I write so many different ways, I sing so many different genres, that I perpetually inhabit different musical spaces.  For example:

In the past month I’ve continued my solo performances with my piano, originals and covers, rock to folk to whatever I feel like playing in the moment.

Along with my bandmate, Devin Melanson, I’ve performed at FKO23 – our first filk convention (for music based on fantasy/sci fi literature) – and released a sampler CD with our friend, Kari Maaren, which I’ll post about separately.

I’ve begun my reacquaintance with folk music – the music of my youth – in preparation for a fundraising gig in May (more on that to follow), which also means improving my relationship with my harp.  I’ve been walking around with it strapped to my back for days now.

My band (Pent Up) gets together when we can, but finding time to practice and play gets harder when life throws us all curve balls, some crueller than others.  We have to look for light in the darkness, and cherish those moments of pure collaborative joy when and where we can find them.

And lately I’ve been haunted by the blues.  Oh, do I want to learn to shape my voice around those grooves.  To lose myself in that special kind of grit and loss that inspires the feet to dance.  How is that possible?  The paradox intrigues me.

I listen to the monumental talent of the musicians I continue to meet and I am sometimes overwhelmed.  Here are a few of my favourites lately, so let me share the love:

Sean Pinchin – incredible blues slide guitar player, teacher and singer/songwriter whose stories are in his songs

Courtney Lynn – unique singer/songwriter, quirky and original, playing Ani-esque rhythms on that acoustic guitar in her hands

Derek Downham – fantastic on whatever he’s playing – guitar, keys, percussion, vocals – a true performer

Mary McKay – walked in on her rocking the Lake Affect backed by The Pie Guys, with her smooth, jazzy powerhouse of a voice

Samantha Martin – sets the stage for her blues band with guitar, vox and real presence – caught her revue at the Lula Lounge

Have I missed anyone?  Probably.  I’ll add them to the next one.

I’ve heard it many times before, but “this too shall pass.”  Until it does, I’ll be singing the blues, or rocking the house, or entertaining the geeks, or telling stories to the folkies.  Or I’ll be recording my own music.  Or writing my own songs.  And who can tell how any of that will sound.  Let’s wait and see.

Hope to see you somewhere along the way.


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