Biographical Log of Michael Furstner - Page 277

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Martinshof Story - Happiness - Awareness - Black Forest walks - Camino - Dolmen Tour - Travel

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Thursday - Monday, March 21 - 25 2013 (diary)

Darwin A few weeks ago I was approached by the Management of the Darwin Trailer Boat Club (DTBC) to start a Bridge Club at their waterfront premises in Fannie Bay.
The DTBC (location "2" on adjacent map) is right next to the Darwin Sailing Club, where (6-10 years ago) I used to be very active in helping to run their weekly yacht races.

I agreed to give the DTBC's idea a go. It is a wonderful location and a great alternative for players living in the Darwin city and its surrounding suburbs. At present the only bridge venue in Darwin is in Leanyer in the far NE ("10" on the map) a long way from Darwin's city center.
As a first step I will run a Beginners Bridge Course at the DTBC on Wednesday evenings (from 7pm) commencing a few weeks after Easter on April 24.
The DTBC has announced this event in their recent Newsletter and I will also place a few advertisements in the NT News Saturday newspaper a couple of weeks beforehand.   I keep my fingers crossed and hope this venture will have a better fate than last year's attempt to start a Bridge Club in Bees Creek, which attracted no interest whatsoever.

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Tuesday - Sunday, March 26 - 31 2013 (diary)

On piano accordion, early 1950s One of the Australian free to air commercial TV stations is at present showing a rerun of the delightful British series Pie in the Sky.
The series is about a semi-retired policeman who tries to combine his occupation as chef/owner of his restaurant "Pie in the Sky", with the not infrequent crime investigations his former Police superior throws his way.
I enjoy the various episodes but my main attraction to the series is its signature tune (played at the start and end of each episode) featuring a wonderful baritone sax solo. Every time I hear it my soul resonates and I become highly emotional, almost to tears.
My earliest love with the sound of a musical instrument was the piano accordion which, during the years just after the war (WW2), was as popular an instrument in Holland as it was (and still is) in France. I started to play the piano accordion at age 12, and played in two accordion bands and performed at concerts and dances in several villages of the Gelderse Achterhoek (the region to the East of the river IJssel).

On baritone sax, Mooloolaba 2001 But through the 1950s Jazz started to take hold of the Netherlands. At first through the midnight radio Jazz broadcasts of the Voice of America (with Duke Ellington's Take the A Train as its signature tune) I listened to every night I could.
Soon after numerous "Dixieland" bands started to spring up out of nowhere throughout the Netherlands, and an increasing number of Jazz records became available from a wide range of American, English and Dutch Jazz artists.
That is when I discovered and fell in love with the baritone sounds of Gerry Mulligan and Ronnie Ross.
But it was not until the early 1980s, after leaving my Geology and Engineering profession, that I had the opportunity to make the sound of this wonderful instrument my own.

I was enormously lucky to fall in the hands of the legendary Jazz Educator, band conductor and then Head of the Tertiary Jazz College in Adelaide, Hal Hall for my first serious lessons on the baritone sax.

"Divide you practice time in half," he told me "use the first half to work on your tone, use the rest for everything else!"

"Sooner or later every player will be able to play notes very fast," Hal Hall elaborated "but only those who have developed their own unique sound will be noticed and appreciated.

I took his advice to the letter and for the first 2 to 2½ hours of every morning of my daily (4-5 hours) saxophone practice slogged away on my tone. And it worked ! Although after 3 years my technique was still at a relative beginners level, my baritone sax tone had developed into a deep resonant mellow sound which was the envy of many saxophone players who heard me. It also gave me an enormous sense of achievement.

It took me another 7 years before my technical skill started to reach a professional level. Ironically, having reached that point I started to travel around Australia while camping in Caravan parks, which made it more or less impossible to practise or play saxophone.   But for me it has always been the journey, not the destination, that has been my motivator. What is the point of continuing once you reached your destination ?

House in Tasmania - by Malveen White Now, more than 10 years later, when I hear the baritone sound from "Pie in the Sky" I ask myself : "Shall I go back to this and start playing again ? But so far the answer remains "no".

I believe that one of the most important things during your life is finding your own voice.   For there are two interdependent elements to every personal expression you pursue :
It is not only what you wish to say, to express, to convey that you should focus on. It is also how (the voice with which) you express yourself that is (at least) equally important.

In music it may have been my own improvisation or a written piece of music that I wanted to express, but only through the voice I developed on my baritone sax became this expression truly and uniquely me.
In painting it is not the subject, but the way the artist expresses it, that is important. Likewise the story a writer creates (I believe) is less important than the unique way in which he (or she) conveys it to the reader.

In fact throughout our life we develop our own voice in everything we do, be it business, our profession, our creativity. And success or failure is as much dependant on how we approach something as on what we wish to achieve.

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