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– Brazil Journal Week 11, 27 de Agusto – Joseph Thieman

August 29, 2012

Brazil Journal Week 11, August 27, 2012

How is it that the days can seem so short, but time seems to move slower than it ought to be?  This is something that I may have always felt.  My list of things that I want to do with my life is constantly growing, leaving me always wanting more from myself.  Sometimes moments move by at the rate of the universe, and I feel incredibly unable to capture it before it passes.  I can not fit enough practice, studying, or writing in that second.  Another weekend of painting walls, and another week of feeling letdown by myself is gone.  I want to be able to lock myself in a room for 2 years and do nothing except practice and write.  But if this dream could come true, what would I write, what would I practice.  What instruments and styles could I become better at?  I believe the goal of practicing music is freedom, not perfection; furthermore, I am afraid that total freedom is something you fight for until you die.  So what are the fruits of labor now?  These are just the questions that ramble through my head as I ride the bus to and fro, day by day.  This is what I think about while I’m stuck spending my entire weekend painting, instead of transcribing Freddie, Miles, Dizzy, Hermeto, Parker, and Monk.

I have started playing trumpet with a very good group here.  They play mostly contemporary Brazilian Jazz, and it was very nice to finally get to really play some trumpet.  By this I mean I am able to actually read difficult Hermeto lead-lines, and solo over chord changes that are more complex than “Dream a Little Dream of Me.”  (Which I love and could play everyday for the rest of my life.)

But generally here I am going through the motions.  I have goals piled high enough to measure next to the Great Pyramids.  I am trying to keep them all organized so that I may have a chance in achieving some of them.  I believe the old saying is “ Shoot for the moon.  Even if you miss, you will land among the stars.”  I am writing and practicing all the time; it is what gets me out of bed in the morning.  I feel inspired here, and I can’t really say why.  I have song ideas rattling in my brain all the time, when I’m not at the school for my 13 hour days, I am in the living room of this historic house playing my roommate’s nylon string guitar trying to figure out Julian Lage songs.


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