So now that the school year has come almost to a close where I teach, I found the time to wander down to the river behind my house the other night, and I just played for a while in the dark. Not practiced, just played. I found myself picking out melodies for some old songs I never play, by ear, and running through them again and again until I got the melody down pretty well, and then improvising a bit. That meant spending the better part of an hour on one song but it was a lot of fun. I think I'll make that a part of my process for figuring out leads to the songs we do play regularly. Something about playing in the dark made a big difference. (Moon hadn't risen yet, and the trees grow pretty thick along the river.)
One other thing I discovered in the process: I really do prefer the sound of my old Wegen 150 to the Blue Chip I've been using for the last eight months or so--but now that I'm used to the BC, I have a hard time hanging on to the Wegen!
Finally, we had a little gig yesterday afternoon (local art show), and I went to it after spending about five hours digging raspberry beds with a pick and shovel. Mostly the pick. Turns out my playing--both hands!-- was as clumsy as it has been in years. It wasn't till about the last two songs of our set that my fingers had loosened up enough for me to play with some degree of grace and fluidity. Let that be a lesson!
Ah, summertime (almost)!