Thing II does Blackbird

You know I forget sometimes that I trained as a classical guitarist. It was so long ago.

I’ve played a lot of music on a lot of instruments since then. I do still feel a little shiver of thrill though remembering the first pieces I played from Tune A Day which now I know were very simple but back then sounded well hot to me!

I’ve forgotten more music on the classical guitar than I care to remember having learned so many pieces but six years in Bangladesh with very little sheet music plus ten years before that of being a busy music teacher means it has been years since I could really put in some solid study again.

So it’s a joy that the recent years spent teaching my son (known on these pages as Thing II) have started to produce fruit – and he’s now playing pieces which I used to play myself. In the last couple of years he’s really got into the guitar (he tolerates the piano and theory lessons I give him) and made it his own. It’s exciting because it’s giving me an excuse to dust off long-forgotten songs and re-learn them.

He was asked to play in the junior school concert just recently – yes he really is just 11 years old despite looking like a teenager – and he was torn between playing a composition of his own or attempt to cobble together ‘Blackbird‘ by Paul McCartney which I just begun teaching him as a ‘freebie extra’ for doing so well with his electric, acoustic and classical guitar work.

I was torn, actually, in guiding him because his own composition was very good. But ‘Blackbird’ won in the end – just. He’s made it his own and played around with the various sections but nevertheless, on a couple of weeks’ work slotted in between all the practice I make him do for a dozen other pieces, I think he did pretty darned well.

So here’s a #proud_dad moment for me and an opportunity to show off my younger child (my older one gets much attention and praise on these pages and her own). He’s a lovely lad and never asks for much but tries his best to please others – so I was delighted he could pull off this, his first solo performance, with comfortable ease. I would have hated it if he had turned out to be like his dad – terrified to perform in front of any audience and unable to remember from one note to another. Thankfully, he got this one licked.

I promptly rewarded him by spending a ridiculous amount of money we don’t have on books to teach him Jazz and Blues guitar – something he’s wanted to get into recently. I’ll confess – the teaching material I chose was as much of an interest to me as for him. I would love to get back into Jazz and Blues properly again. Anyone need a gig? The FP boys will be available shortly…

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About D K Powell

British freelance journalist, author, writer, editor, musician, educational consultant. I lived with Wifey, Thing I (daughter) & Thing II (son) in Bangladesh for 5-6 years working for an NGO called LAMB. Wifey led the Hospital Rehab department and I used to teach O levels at the school before going full-time as a freelance writer in 2013. Now we're back in the UK learning how to be British again. When not writing or editing, I'm busy trying to complete a Masters degree in Intercultural relations in Asian Contexts and reading way too many books at once. I also drink tea - lots of it.
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19 Responses to Thing II does Blackbird

  1. Festerman says:

    Got a Oud for Christmas

    Like

  2. One of the most mixed-emotion-est moments I ever experienced was when I realized my son was better on the guitar than I. I’ll be darned if teach him anything again. (Grin). Your son sounds great and it’s always nice to hear the Beatles carried into new generations.

    Like

  3. Fahima Begum says:

    Sounds good, well done to Sam.

    Like

  4. Ladygardenia says:

    Aah, I love the classical guitar! Unfortunately, I, Myself have forgotten all about it lol… Your kids are so talented!

    Like

  5. Madhu says:

    That is brilliant for a 11 year old!! He deserved the reward🙂

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  6. Dad deserves to be VERY VERY proud!!!!! …and well done on the reward!🙂

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  7. renxkyoko says:

    He’s only 11 ? He’s very good at guitar. You should be very, very proud of him.

    Like

    • Yeah he’s not bad is he?! I am proud of both my kids – more for who they are, admittedly, than what they can do. But sometimes, like here, I’m proud of them for their little successes too🙂

      Like

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