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Gordon Shumway
London, England

August 19, 2022 - 5:20 am
Member Since: August 1, 2016
Forum Posts: 2435
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I'm musical, but I was never a prodigy, and I'm starting to regret using up most of my youth on the piano. It meant the only time I ever practised the oboe was twice a week in the school and town youth orchestras, and maybe an hour a week outside of that.

My first and unofficial teacher was my next-door neighbour who was a self-taught lower-intermediate pianist and double-bassist. He taught me for a few months then got me in touch with a professional teacher. He insisted I learn the piano as "it's the basis of all music and music theory." I'd expressed a childish interest in composing, and he took this to heart although it was obvious to all of us that I had zero talent at composing. I regret all this, as I didn't have the talent to play a second instrument well, and I wish my first instrument had been something more sociable - oboe maybe, but violin with a lot of hindsight (I've said before that I quit CG for uke, as the guitar is a loner's instrument, whereas uke playing is a lot more sociable, and ditto for violins and community orchestras).

Getting it off my chest, I guess.

In reality my parents were too poor and too unwilling to buy more than one instrument - I had a friend who had a nice piano and a nice antique violin and a nice wooden clarinet. My school loaned me a plastic oboe. All I had was a piano that cost £100 in 1973 (and which my parents sold for £100 in 1983. They were not exactly economically astute). My brother kicked up an autistic fuss, so they spent £70 on a plastic clarinet for him, which has been in the loft since 1976 and which may have been a good investment, if by accident!

The only possible route to violin might have been via my nextdoor neighbour had I insisted. He played in a community orchestra and must have had some minor connections.


August 19, 2022 - 8:09 am
Member Since: December 26, 2018
Forum Posts: 5361
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Thanks for sharing that @Gordon Shumway. That was beautifully put. You always amaze me, whether with your knowledge, ability to explain, or to tell it like you are thinking (😂). Now, the pure thought provoking memories. 

What a wonderful post. 


The Bumblebee Flies!

Please ignore any typos. My typing ability on a real typewriter did not transfer to these device key pads.

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