Musicians are often asked, "What is your day or real job?", "What do you do for a living?". And those questions are often followed by, "You look like you're having way too much fun up there!" Well, I am a self employed musician. Playing music of any genre is my job. I play professionally. It's not my 'hobby'. And it IS fun! I often tell my beginner piano students that playing music should be fun. I tell them there's a reason it's called "playing" music. Playing denotes fun.
I love playing classical piano. So much so, that I didn't want to 'taint' it by playing anything other than classical music on piano. All other music, I would play on trombone which I also loved. Well, that was the future plan anyway. I was crazy about the horn bands back in the day. At the time the deliberate separation of styles between instruments proved more difficult to me than I thought it would. The instrument of choice didn't matter. I just wanted to play. I could go into my whole introduction to music, but for now I'll save that for another time.
I love my job. Whether keyboards, trombone, writing, arranging, producing, whatever. I love what I do for a living. I love that there were those who fully supported me in this endeavor. It could have very easily gone the other way. You know, "Why don't you get a REAL job?" Admittedly, I had that "real" job for about eight years. I loved that job. I especially loved my coworkers. And though the job had nothing to do with music, it seemed to work for and with me! I was able to go to 'work' and still had a lot of the day left where I could do MY "real job". Fast forward 33 years, I'm still performing. I'm still playing. It's still fun to me no matter the gig (or the job, if you prefer). Sure I complain about certain aspects of my job. Who doesn't? In no way am I perfect and by no means do I profess to be. I've always considered myself fortunate and blessed that my phone still rings after all these years, that people still consider me relevant. In fact, I'm amazed that I'm still doing the job I love after well over 50 years.
I wish I could personally thank all the wonderful and super talented musicians/friends I've had the distinct honor, privilege and pleasure of working with. There are so many. Thank you all for allowing me that space on your stage. And thank you especially to those who gave of their time and talents to accompany me on MY musical quests.
I LOVE my JOB! It is more than what I do. It is who .... and what .... I am.