Thursday, November 1, 2012

It's a surprise!

Not really. It's about singing. Shocker, I know.

It is no secret that I love singing. I am highly addicted to it and feel the need to participate in organized singing at least once a week, more if possible. I went for a year or two without singing here and there since I've been married and after a while even Marci was telling me I needed to get back to doing it regularly.

The interesting part for me is that I have no idea what I sound like. I've heard recordings of my voice and I am personally of the belief that I sound like a total dweeb. I recognize that I have some skill in matching the tone of others around me (which is one of the reasons my choir directors like having me around - I can blend well with nearly any voice), and I can sight-read reasonably well, I know that I"m generally on pitch, I learn music pretty quickly and I also know that I have plenty of vocal power when needed.

All of that just means that I'm a good singer in your average choir.

Tonight I had the pleasure of two little boosts to my ego. Dr. Bennett arranged us in a "mixed" configuration for a couple of songs and Carol came over to sit next to me. She said, "I never get to sit next to you, Jared, so this will be fun!" We've sung together for a long time, so I thought she was simply talking about sitting next to an old friend. When we got done with one of the songs she immediately was practically jumping out of her chair saying, "Ooooh! I just LOVE listening to you cool!" I was more than just a bit surprised. I hardly expected that reaction.

Later, I was asked to do a short solo as part of preparation for an opera we're singing in. I did my thing and a couple of different people said things like "SO beautiful!" - WOW! Again, hardly the expected response - I thought of myself as more filling up vocal space and wasn't really focused on creating beautiful music. I don't mean that from false modesty either; as much as I love singing I'm usually genuinely surprised that people like my voice. Marci tells me that all the time, but she's my wife so I can't trust her judgement ;) So, despite the small ego-trip that this might appear to be, I felt genuinely blessed tonight that others felt some joy at hearing me sing. I don't often get that kind of feedback and it was very precious to me.

So, today I'm thankful that I have been given the gift of singing, but not just the ability to sing, but also the gift of having a voice that others seem to enjoy. That kind of encouragement goes a long way in helping me to be excited every chance I get to go and sing some more.

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