Friday, March 2, 2012

The Volunteer State

After I became successful at supporting myself by performing local venues, I felt that it was time to give back to the same community that enabled me to live quite comfortably by playing the music I love.

Every so often, I would inform my band-mates that this months rehearsal would be at a local nursing home cafeteria or children's hospital. After all, why let all that music go to waste rattling around my empty house when there are people desperate for an emotional lift.

Once in a while, I would come across a substitute musician that would inform me that they won't perform in public for less than a certain fee (around $100). I would thank them for their honesty, but promptly replace them. I can understand that they need to make a living, but one benefit public rehearsal wasn't going to bankrupt them.

It is important to recognize that talent shouldn't be squandered. I am grateful for the tools I was given and realize that those same tools go disappear just as easily.

So the next time your ensemble is planning a rehearsal, pick up the phone and find an appreciative audience for a truly heartwarming experience for all concerned.

good gigging!

Larry Marra

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