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no room for hipsters

the occupation of Ashley and Levon

We, and the boxes, are sharing the studio part of our house every minute of every day.  Ask Ashley if she likes my songs and she’ll say yes.  Ask her if she likes hearing them everyday, on repeat, with twenty minute instrumental sections and she’ll smile at you.  She puts the headphones on for me.  I’m pretending to be offended, but I don’t care- I don’t watch her every brush stroke, either.  The truth is, this is how we’ve always wanted to spend our days.

Visual and performing arts have their processes that overlap and their areas of exclusive reign.  Both share the core of expression, but like any characteristic as individuals, our art forms make us specialized in areas where the others do not.  But as couples do, we blend.

A song or performance exists only when played; it takes place across time.  A painting captures an image in a moment and stays as created.  But we can see these examples cross over.  A stimulating art piece will influence its environment as long as it exists in that place, across time, like a song.  And like a painting, a favorite song will often give you the same imagery and take you to the same places in your mind each time you listen.  Ashley and I, having our own processes happening on each side of the room, find ourselves in each others work.  I’m sure of it.  Even if she is listening to headphones, we’re being influenced by the same music collection. 

next topic.

I have an interesting project going on that I want to mention.  Keyboards on X stands make me resent the day I was 6 years old and sat at a piano.  Who doesn’t want to be John Mayer instead, dancing around while carressing a Stratocaster and making embarrassing faces that he and his guitar should keep to themselves?  

However, playing any real piano, which doesn’t even have to be a grand, is my favorite version of myself.  Playing a plastic box on stilts is not.  If you’ve been reading this very long, I’ve told you already about my research into piano hauling and moving for every gig.  Not going to happen anytime soon.  So instead I’m building a shell from my old piano to sort of hide my keyboard.

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I’ve done this before but I’ve got a better prototype going this time.  I always seem to find these giveaway pianos that I can tune up and play long enough to drain the last bit of life from, but they sort of play like my Datsun used to drag race.  So I bust them up and make these contraptions.  My first one is in my parent’s garage in KY, built from a taller piano so that I could have a second tier in which to sit my organ over the piano.  I was in a band then, so I played all this other get up that’s long since gone on eBay, plus we had a trailer so I never designed it to be compactable. 

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My new version will look almost exactly like the original piano, and will hopefully fold into the trunk of my Corolla.  This is no easy task, but the end result will be that the fact I’m really playing a keyboard on an X stand will be our little secret.   I hope to finish the construction today, and then we’re going to give it a paint job.  Stay tuned.   

painted in high school art class, framed with first demolished piano parts

painted in high school art class, framed with first demolished piano parts

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