Let It Be: A Gateway To The Universe
Much to my parent's credit, they wanted me to play an instrument, to have music as part of my life. They started me with Suzuki violin at the age of 4.
Much to their chagrin, I didn’t take to it.
In fact, I flat out rejected it. Suzuki – pass. Clarinet in 2nd grade –lost my clarinet to the tune 250 bucks. Endless attempts at classical piano - #fail.
And then an influential teacher saw me as me and let music out of the bottle. My piano teacher Mrs Resnikoff. I remember her saying that she knew I had music in me because I would sing the notes to whatever Beethoven piece she was trying (in vain) to teach me but I just couldn’t find them on the keyboard. I hated it and I never practiced so...
For some reason, and to this day I don’t know why, she began showing me guitar chords at the end of each piano lesson - 5 or 10 minutes at a time. Eventually I bought a Beatles song book, which was the only rock and roll band I knew at the time. A quick break in the arc of my personal tale for a reality check - while I listen to more Grateful Dead - live, The Beatles were in many ways the first global rock band and the last - certainly the best in my opinion. The songwriting (musically and lyrically), the production value, the message, the energy. Unmatched. Much like The Dead they were not the best at what they did they were the only ones who did what they did. Note to self - must see Macca live before its too late!
Back to my little corner of rock. Somehow or other, my Grandmother caught wind of my failings as a classical pianist and my interest in the guitar. This was the year I had been turned onto Shel Silverstein, and for my11th birthday she bought me a classical toy guitar. It was a piece of junk, but you could tune it.
The day after getting that piece of sh-t guitar, I woke up at 7am, sat cross-legged on my bed and began to string together the chords to the Beatles' Let it Be. After an hour or two I could play and sing that damn song; it was rough and ragged, but it was magical.
Like lightning. Like religion.
Content wise, I remember the morning. I remember sitting on my pine green blanket and the red and pink cover of the book. The feeling is what sticks with me the most, though it was like being touched by some unknown entity, filled completely and lifted into some higher and alternate universe. At the risk of being inappropriately Californian, I realize now it was, in fact, a way of connecting with THE universe through a gateway they call music, it rocked then and it still does. Hail hail John, Paul, Ringo and George - you changed the world for me and I would argue for all of us (wether we know it or not). #ConspireToSmile - Reid