Sunday, April 24, 2005

A Break

At one point this afternoon, after Coe but before I found out I was effed, a fellow RA grabbed me and asked if I wanted to check out a concert over in the fine arts building. It's a quick walk from here, and I was putting off returning to That Goddamn Linguistics Paper, so we agreed to go for a half hour or so.

It was the UW Wind Ensemble and Collegiate Chorale performing "Mass" by Leonard Bernstein. I was immediately glad I went as soon as it started, for three reasons. First, I have a supersecret crush on someone in the ensemble (glasses, short hair, AND a musician). Second, I realized about five minutes into it that I don't tickle my brain enough; I don't get out and experience fine art nearly as often as I should. A part of me really gets a charge out of experiencing art - in this case, music - with which I am simply not familiar. It's not that I feel more cultured or anything; it's that it literally tickles my brain.

The third reason is even more personal.

My favorite brass instrument - hell, my favorite instrument after guitar - is the French Horn. This could be because my mom used to play it; I have vague memories of her practicing in the basement. So, whenever I hear a French Horn, I think of my mom. On top of that, though, there's just something about the sound that gets me: gentle, modestly noble, and a hint of sadness. For you rock 'n rollers in the Dearest Readership, the best example of a French Horn in pop music is the beginning of the Rolling Stones' "You Can't Always Get What You Want." I'm currently struggling to come up with other examples, but given enough time I'm sure I could (and if any of you can come with any, we'd all appreciate your input).

So, anyway, during the concert there was a twenty second French Horn solo that tore my heart out. When the rest of the ensemble kicked in, a small part of me wanted to yell at those asshole trumpets and trombones (even you, cute saxophone girl!) to shut the hell up. But I thought that might be bad form.

2 Comments:

Blogger david said...

there's gotta be at least a couple beatles songs with french horn. probably off of "sergeant pepper's..."

if not the beatles, then definitely slayer.

12:36 PM  
Blogger David Gorsline said...

IIRC, the horn appears in the original arrangement for "Tommy," by The Who.

6:01 PM  

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