Halfway through the Meridian Arts Ensemble Rust Belt Tour of 2014, with an update. Touring means: driving, hotels, performing. I’m so happy that the group is playing at the highest level even though we don’t see each other for much of the year. It makes me want to do more. We have now played and taught in Cincinnati, Berea, and Kent, all in Ohio, and did some video recording in Cleveland. We are doing this tour in collaboration with composer Andy Rindfleisch, who has written and arranged some amazing pieces for us. The video session was for his music. I asked how many takes we would have for each piece. Answer: one. We managed to get a good one for each piece – look for these on youtube soon; they will also be available in your grocer’s freezer.
As for the CD, I took the frightening step of playing it in its rough state for my Meridian colleagues. They actually seemed to like it! I feel like my butt is totally on the line: I wrote the music and played it, so there’s nowhere to hide, and if somebody doesn’t like it, that’s all me they are disliking.
Today: drive to Pittsburgh, do a student composer reading, then a masterclass, then a concert.
On a practical note, I have bought big pillows for napping in the back of my van for the drive home. This could be a game changer for me, since I need to drive 10 hours from Fredonia to Madison starting at 5PM on Monday. When I get tired, I’ll pull over somewhere and take a nap. The goal is to be able to pass through Chicago in the dead of night, when there’s no traffic. This is the glamorous life of the touring musician.
Speaking of which, it is time to hit the road.