Keeping It Simple
I’m at the car tyre fixit place. I’m sitting, typing this, while the nice man fixes the tyres. This is my idea of car work: have it done by someone else.
It’s good to recognise our strengths in life. Me, I’m not so much your car man. Sure, I’ll keep on top of the water, oil , and air pressure in the tyres, but that’s about it.
One thing I do like doing – that’s songwriting. Here’s this week’s
Song and A chat Podcast
(from the show notes )
Welcome to another ‘songwriter speaks’ episode. In fact, (Ta dah!!! ) this is my 50th episode. I really look forward to turning the mic on, having a chat and sharing a song (a demo) each week.
The lyrics are about someone I knew who was doing it tough.. The title came from a book about Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay climbing Mt Everest…. climbing a mountain? How about actually making it to the kitchen table, for a start.
I wrote this song in 2016. It seems apt for now with so many people struggling around the world with covid -19.
I’ve composed 800 songs. It is such good fun writing them. You really tune into a creative realm and it seems to be collaborative effort. It’s fascinating to me. (read more)...
I was just teaching an adult student. He asked me how it’s going, what have I been up to, the usual preamble (it’s a great way to relax into a lesson, before you engage as teacher and student. You establish the connection, and the respect – and that stays in place for the lesson). I said I’ve been doing business stuff. Not my forte, nor my particular favourite thing to do in life. Left brained activity.
My student then said he’s good at business. Left brained activity is his forte. While he has a real appreciation for the arts ( loves watching live bands, etc), he struggles with putting the creative process into gear. So once a week for 30 minutes, he exercises the right side of his brain. He doesn’t get frustrated (much). Especially when something as mystifying and complex as music theory and playing two hands at once can be is broken down to a series of simple steps, which is the way to go….
here’s a piano piece you could listen to as you read… First Steps -the melody came from a tune my grandfather used to whistle.
Simple steps are a good thing to focus on when you find yourself in a difficult patch. Here’s a song (from the podcast) I wrote a while back about this. I did have someone in mind that inspired me to compose this piece. It seems relevant to what’s been happening around the world in terms of disconnection, a subject that has surfaced in my blogs recently
Climbing Mountains (live in the lounge – piano/vocal)
Simple steps work. I teach in this way and I perform and paint this way.. Pete Pascoe doesn’t do anything too complicated on the piano. It’s all just a series of simple steps – and as I’m across the theory of what I’m doing in the moment, every time I play, it’s like I’m on holiday.
Muscle memory kicks in, I’m recalling how the song sounds, I’m arranging it in the moment, I’m lost in the pleasure of both departments.
Remembering how the song sounds, as I play, brings back pleasant memories for me. The theory / finger moves have my let hand side of my brain fully occupied.
In the moment of playing , I am not thinking about my bank account, jobs to be done, tax, the grocery list (It is possible to do this. That’s a different kind of playing. Something that I’m not into. Each to their own, but for me, if I’m playing music either for myself or a crowd, I’m playing music- and that is that).
My whole being is engaged with the instrument, lost in the song. Everything I’m doing is about how I can best present the song – no clever Diddy Dee bits …just what’s required.
And that’s how I roll.
Same with my art…it all just happens naturally, once I focus on the job at hand. Like anything, there are a series of steps to follow to achieve the desired result.
Here’s this week’s
Painting (plein air)
As I was painting this scene, I got chatting with the couple that owned the first beach box. I even got given a cup of tea as I painted! That was a first! I really enjoy meeting folks at the beach and chatting for a while as I paint. These good people ended up buying the painting on the spot. I love it when that happens! So this painting will always remind me of that meeting. it’s very much like a live music gig.
I’ll be doing a big studio painting of this later this year. A photo of the smaller plein air painting will help me with my colour choices and the photos I took on the day will give me the detail.
Some examples of this large studio realism paintings here: https://www.petepascoe.com/art/available-paintings/prints/
One of the things I’m heading towards is having all my piano lessons available online as ebooks and video courses. So looking forward to that… helping all those people who ‘had piano lessons as a kid and regret not carrying on with it/ had the wrong teacher’, etc….
So if that sounds like you, or someone you know, Watch these blogs….one of these days I’ll have it all ready to go.
I do have sheet music, prints of seascapes and cartoons, some Cds for sale. If you’d like to support me along the way, please do share my online content. if you’d like to purchase something, please visit https://www.petepascoe.com/
Here’s another song from The Roughest Cut. Ther opening line is ‘I think of you all across the sea’ – and I do. Enjoy!
In the meantime, if you want to keep up with what else I’ve got going on, please do sign up to my email list -send me a request here: email@example.com As well as receiving a code to redeem a free album of my songs, you’ll be first to hear about new music, videos, paintings, gigs, exhibitions new sheet music, etc.
Hope you’re having fun with whatever you’re up to.
Thanks for dropping by.
Here’s the lyrics to the song on the Podcast
CLIMBING MOUNTAINS. words & music by P PASCOE
CLIMBING MOUNTAINS GET REAL
MAKE IT TO THE BREAKFAST TABLE
JUST BE SURE. DO WAHT YOURE ABLE TO
EACH STEP FORWARDS. GREAT AND WHATS MORE
ITS BETTER THAN A SLOW RETREAT
ITS EASY TO JUST SLIP OUT THE BACK DOOR
CARRYING ON TO A BRIGHTER PICTURE
THEN WE SING ON AND LET IT LIFT YA
CARRYING ON AS BEST AS YOU CAN
HOPE WHEN YOU HEAR THIS THEN YOULL FEEL THIS
LOVE WILL BE WITH YOU TOMORROW
LIFT YOUR HEART AND CAST SORROW AWAY
HISTORY SHOWS. I KNOW YOU KNOW
NOTHING EVER LASTS FOREVER
THIS WILL PASS, I HOPE YOURE NEVER HERE AGAIN
AND OH. WERE ALONG FOR THE RIDE. AND OH. WERE BY YOUR SSIDE
ONE THINGS CERTAIN: NOTHINGS CERTAIN
THE LIGHT STREAMS IN THE KITCHEN WINDOW
YOU MIGHT REMEMBER WHAT YOU CAME HERE FOR
CARRYING ON TO A BRIGHTER FUTURE
PAINT IT NOW, FEEL IT NURTURE
YOULL RECOGNISE THE FEELING AS IT GROWS
AND OH. WERE ALONG FOR THE RIDE. AND OH. WERE BY YOUR SIDE