I needed a writing project for 2018 and I knew I wanted this one to be about music. Reflecting back, I realized that there were a number of occasions in my life where either serendipitously or accidently on purpose, I bumped up against some interesting people who also happened to be musicians.
Often the occurrences arose as a result of a little badge on a chain, called a press pas, that afforded me unique opportunities to at least get into some close proximity with an opening not usually available to others. (See Leonard)
Sometimes it’s pure blind luck on an airplane. (See future piece Joni)
Often that little press pass made me feel like a bit of an pretender but I did produce some decent work as a freelancer so I still feel a great deal of gratitude for some ideal opportunities it afforded me.
I am fully aware of the countless artists, entrepreneurs and politicians who are full functioning asshats in reality. Cosby, Weinstein and Trump are the perfect trifecta these days.
Grace Notes is about an ordinary guy bumping naïvely into extraordinarily talented musicians in everyday circumstances. A lovely surprise for me was that the grace note was that small lovely note of their humanity, their gift of the real person outside the mask of celebrity.
Every time it felt like a gift.
I remember my first glimpse of a kid that set us back on our heels as he lit up small town community halls across the fine province of Saskatchewan. It was time when we still had leaders who loved the culture in agriculture, notes and oats if you will …
Have you ever, by mistake, tuned into an AM commercial radio station and in doing so, set off a toxic flare in your brain upon hearing a Justin Bieber song? You then go tell a grandkid that you knew Canadian musicians who were ten times better, but they never, ever made it to radio. In fact, you recall, you have ridden in cars with them.