Inspiration – It’s Contagious!
I love having conversations with people which inspire either them or me. Something about the light that comes up in people’s eyes when an idea which stems from a particular topic magically gels is a beautiful thing to see…especially when they actually turn around and do something with those ideas.
Sometimes simply the act of doing something will ignite the spark. I don’t know why I was thinking about my childhood (actually that’s not true; I’ve been daydreaming a lot about my youth recently), but I was thinking about an old neighbor of mine who may have been sparked to write music because I lived next door.
A little background – I grew up in a post World War II row house with plaster walls which seemed to amplify rather than reduce sound. The side of the house my room and the bathroom were on was next to the Levine’s house. When I was maybe four or five my grandparent’s bought me a small organ (no not a kidney, the musical kind, silly!) and I learned to play several tunes out of the song book that came included with my gift. I’m not sure what the Levines made of “Silent Night” played over and over and over ad nauseum but a few years later they acquired their own organ (placed in their spare room and apparently right up against the wall where my bed was) and began playing it regularly.
I was also an avid shower singer and every now and then either the husband or the wife would ask me about something I had been singing. Half the time I was in there ad libbing so I usually didn’t have a concrete answer. I think maybe they were trying to politely let me know that my bellowing was carrying throughout their house but in my clueless youth, I did not take the hint.
Round about the time I turned eleven, I was invited over to their house for luncheon. Luncheon??? It was the summer of ’76 and there were no white gloves in my wardrobe. As it turned out Mr. Levine had written a song and had it put onto a record (those round vinyl disks that music was played on back when your grandparents were young) and wanted my opinion on whether or not his tune would be palatable to young ears. It turned out to be an okay tune but probably wouldn’t have flown with the younger crowd. Elton John and David Bowie ruled the airwaves and there wasn’t much room for mellow (that being said, Music Box Dancer kicked ass on pop radio and it had been slated for easy listening, so Nna!).
I never did ask him if he pursued trying to market it. His marriage imploded a few years later (very loudly and I got to hear every ugly argument through those resonant plaster walls). I’m glad that perhaps in a small way I opened him up to use the creative part of his mind.
Sometimes our dreams don’t blossom much past our own doorways, but if we chase them at least we have the satisfaction of knowing that we tried.
p.s. The pictures in this post have very little to do with the text. They are meant to engage your mind and perhaps to inspire you to do something awesome. So don’t just sit there! Create!