[Harp-L] Living the Blues-was the Blues Life
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- Subject: [Harp-L] Living the Blues-was the Blues Life
- From: "David Priestley ( for harp-L)" <dmharpman@xxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Fri, 26 Aug 2011 20:38:51 +0100
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I think that we'd all agree that 'Blues' as a musical genre,
is one that deals with pain and suffering as part of its main-stays.
Blues is a music that honestly engages with life's many nadirs (low
That said a musician uses their ability for empathy when playing the
rich stories lines contained in the song lyrics.
We don't have to kill our lovers to play 'Frankie & Johnny' with
While I can understand the idea that life can be and feel so bad that a
person can turn to drink and or drugs in a vain attempt to make it
feel, if not better then, at least less bad. By NO means am I
advocating the use of drink and or drugs as a means of gaining respite
from the the hardness of a hard life. The truth is that while one may
feel less bad for a short bit these things nearly always end up giving a
extra area of problems that they don't need no matter how their life is.
I really feel that the key to playing songs that deal with situations,
that hopefully we never personally never have to be in, is* empathy*.
I have lived through things that I really wouldn't wish upon another.
The Blues songs that I have written about them are the only good thing
that came from those times.
It's always also worth remembering the saying "there but for the grace
of God go I", if one gets the itch to be judgmental about the lives of
others. Addiction may start as a choice but it is none the less a very
It can be hard in the entertainment industry as one is often being
offered a drink (or worse) by a fan at the break and there is also the dumb
'Sex, Drugs & Rock an' Roll' mythology. It can be a subtle fall often
starting with a few drinks before a performance, in order to loosen
oneself up, or the occasional use of stimulants in order to deal with
the long hours. The number of good reasons for doing the wrong thing can
be endless. However I'm not saying that one should live like a monk either.
As a teacher I often make students aware of 'state related learning'.
Basically 'state related learning' is: that if one is in an 'altered
state' when you do something for the first time you will find that you
can only access the memory when you are in the same or a similar state.
However you don't have to be off your face all the time to recall stuff
that you did first when in a 'state'. All you need to do is visualize
your self doing what ever it was that got you into that state and that
will create trace elements that are enough to access those 'state
Any one who is having to deal with the illness of addiction, weather
directly or indirectly has my sincerest sympathies and wishes for a
D Priestley AKA Dr Midnight.
England's first harmonica Guru.
Do feel free get in touch.
Harmonica lessons POA,(10 = 20% discount,& 20 = 25% discount).
I teach from: 51 Barkston Gdns, the basement flat& On-Line,
Email me or call me to book lessons or get more info.
Phone=(44) 0207 373 0295
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