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  • Writer's pictureRoger Greenaway

Out of practice

Updated: Nov 17

What happens when you forget everything you learnt ? I feel the need to write and play songs again, pick up the baton to speak. After following every other distraction that life in the world can put in front of me, some welcome, some not so productive, and now I find I can't always play the whole song through. I forget the chords, the touch, even the lyrics... but deep down I know there is a place in my heart reserved for writing and singing songs. I'm simply out of practice. So what to do?

When I started writing songs I threw myself into the muse, I was always motivated, constantly tutuing on the piano and guitar. I learnt a lot in the process and I always had a song ready to entertain family and friends at the drop of a hat. Thus, I progressed swiftly into live performance.

All it takes then is for me to grab the guitar that spends most of the time alone in the corner and start playing. Write some songs and find a gig. Well yeah, but why does that feel so hard now?

Thirty five years ago when I began singing in local bars, I didn't have to think about rehearsing, I was always singing, and always keen to play music. Looking back it feels like I was beamed on stage, it felt so easy.

Twenty years ago I began recording, even that just kind of morphed out of nowhere. But I guess not really, in truth I actually spent 100s of hours practicing, it just didn't feel like practice. Maybe it wasn't as easy as I think it was. There were fitness routines that went alongside playing, study, research, and lots of singing. I really had a great time performing, and eventually recording some of my songs. I wonder now why did I stop performing for so long? whaa happened?

I don't know really. Music just became less important, the expansion of my young family and honestly trying to promote my music was frustrating and was taking me nowhere emotionally or financially I had become cynical about music and, well, I had a family now, so slowly I started doing other stuff instead.

Then all of a sudden my passion for performing music was reignited. I love Music. I always did, always will, and it just so happens that last summer I was invited to a few concerts, toto at the summerdays festival in Arbon, and then in October, catching Deep Purple on tour in Zurich. Another highlight was Lilly Martin and her band playing in the Rorschach Jazz Festival. Seeing these musicians and their passion for performing live pinched a nerve somewhere, they inspired me and I realised that I missed playing live music, the buzz of an audience, the show. I had distanced myself somehow.

So time to pick up that guitar, I'm getting excited about a song again, how the form works, arranging, finding the right sound...harmonies. How will it work live? Finding a band... The encouragement and support I've got from my family and friends to get back into live performance especially my wife and children has all played its part. I have enough songs, I think it's time to record them and go out and perform them. Me and Sacha Spiegel already started recording in Zurich, with Louie Greenaway and Kevin Kandl...real cool.

It's an interesting time for me to record music again. Digital technology has improved a lot. I think there's some cool paradigm shifts happening on the music delivery front too... I'm excited. I'm looking forward to checking out the best ideas and getting my music out there. So with that said, I better get on with some practice then.

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