My First Cello

28 06 2009

Not too many people know this, but growing up, I played the cello for several years. Like nearly 10 years, starting from 5th grade all the way through high school. It was a long journey, and only added to my nerd status growing up. Playing in the orchestra was definitely not as cool as playing in the band.

The one key lesson I learned from all those years of playing cello was that natural talent only goes so far. I had a an aptitude for learning new music and techniques very quickly as a child. Armed with that knowledge, I would do what most kids in that position would do, take it easy. In my world, things were easy, so I could just float by on raw talent alone. This was my downfall later on in my musical career as those who practiced far more than I eventually became far better cello players than me. I was slow to get over  a certain plateau, and never did quite make it further.

As I look back on those days of my musical past, I am forced to realize one single fact: I never owned my own instrument. We had always used an instrument provided by the school. I never really cared as a kid, I was able to do well enough with the school cellos. My music teacher would always tell me to get one. I never did. Until today. It has been a full five (5) years since I last touched a cello, but today I found a basic starter cello that I actually own.

It seems odd that it took more than 20 years for me to own a cello. And, quite frankly, I don’t have all the time in the world to play. However, I do have two small daughters whom I can teach the basics of cello to, and who already seem quite enamored with it and the opportunity to play. From there, I can get in a couple hours a week of quality practice time. With a solid foundation, I truly hope to branch out musically in ways I was never able to as a kid.

Despite my torrid past with the cello, one thing it did give me is an understanding and appreciation of music and a desire to pursue music as a way to express myself.