Saturday, November 23, 2013

Santa Made an Early Stop

I got paid (finally!) yesterday. I say finally because that particular client likes to push it out as long as possible and I usually have to fire off an email reminding them that THEIR policy is to pay in 30 days, not mine. So, two weeks later, I got the money. Naturally, money and I are soon parted, especially when Jenny is in a mood to buy musical instruments.

We went to Artichoke Music in Portland, hoping to get a stand for her hammered dulcimer, but they had none. Instead, they had something I wanted, something they NEVER can keep in stock. This is it:

It's a Firefly banjo ukulele, a cross between an ukulele and a banjo. The ease of playing of a uke (only four strings, nylon strings for comfort, lightweight) and the twangy, loud sound of a banjo. It's a kick to play,  even though the classical songs I usually play sound a bit odd on it. Guess I'll have to learn some new songs.

Instead of the hammered dulcimer stand, Jenny noticed a recorder in a glass case. It's a Moeck Rottenburg 439 alto recorder. We have several recorders and I don't like the sound of the sopranos (too high) and can't play the tenor (too big for my small hands), but this one is just right.  In fact, it's better than just right. This is an amazing instrument. And it sells for more money than I would ever pay for an instrument, but this was supposedly used (with no signs of wear) and they sold it to us for a fraction of the cost. In fact, it cost considerably less than the Firefly. And the sound! This is so rich and deep.

I don't like high sounds. They hurt my ears. So the reason I don't like opera is that they feature the sopranos, and I sit there and cringe and tremble like a whipped puppy.  But I could listen to this one for hours. And I can also play it. Only one problem. An alto recorder is tuned differently from the others so music has to be either written specifically for it, or transposed.

Transposed is a word Jenny can use in a sentence with authority. I can barely pronounce it and certainly can't do it. For me to play it a couple of things will have to happen. Jenny will have to transpose and write the music down. I will have to learn how to play the recorder. But with this recorder, it will be worth it.

So Merry Christmas to us! It's merry and bright and musical around here tonight.


  1. Oh, that is too cool for school. Make your own music up if you want to. Any kind of music that you think will do.