Tag Archives: Sheila E

Kikita the Bad Ass Timbalera

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I did it.

I performed!

http://youtu.be/AmVJGLfm_NY

People cheered!

It was exhilarating.

I SOOO didn’t think I was ready, but it was such an amazing experience anyway!
Plus, playing with a “band” taught me more than I expected. I had to know more than just what I was supposed to be playing. I had to know how all the different parts from all the different instruments were supposed to fit together and then I had to listen and constantly adjust accordingly. Of course, I am not very good at that part at all and sometimes my adjustments were … less than awesome.

What WAS awesome, however, was the part where: even when I messed up, I didn’t stop and found my way back to the right place.

Not stopping is a big deal.
You can’t stop.
Nothing says “OMG! I messed up!” the way stopping does.
Ok, sure, you can make an “OMG! I messed up!” face… but it might look like a different emotion instead.
Personally, I think my “OMG! I messed up!” face says “OMG! I’m playing timbales!”

Performing required a whole new level of bravery.
I had to be OK with not getting it perfectly right.

I completely forgot about the crowd.
I was in a zone.
It was … delicious.

Plus, it felt very cool being the only chick.

I am so excited to do it again.
What I am REALLY excited for is looking back on this first performance a few years from now and seeing how far I’ve gone.

I imagine there will be more cowbell. 😉

What I was Thinking

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Now that I am the proud owner of bad ass timbales, I pity my neighbors.

I spent every spare moment practicing.

But, I’m kind of like State Farm… I’m a good neighbor. I won’t practice after 8:30 pm (ok, sometimes 9 pm) on a school night.

And I try to practice in the middle of the day on weekends.

But I’m practicing.

And my instructor could tell. Again, his face said more than his words….

Him: You’re doing REALLY good! You’re already doing better than my congas guy, and I’ve been teaching him longer!

His Face: DAAAAAAAAYYYYYUUUMMM!! Girl’s got skills! WAAAAAAY BETTER than last week!

😀

Look out, Sheila E!

(Really, it is more like “Look our, Armand Assante!” because THIS SCENE – 11:51 – is my inspiration)

Guitar Center

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Not fully recovered from being sick in that I am not eating much, but I feel fine so I am ready to start November.
And what a start!
Last Friday I stopped by the Guitar Center. I couldn’t think of any other store that sold instruments and I wanted to hold a saxophone. I had been leaning towards wanting to play that one, but how could I know for sure if I never held one?

Despite carrying saxophones online, Guitar Center does NOT carry anything but guitars and drums in their store. Or, at least, in my local store. As I walked in and saw wall to wall guitars I became super intimidated and thought about turning around and walking out, but that’s not who I want to be so I pressed on.

I saw timbales at the front of the drum secton. Then I saw congas a little further in. I was like a moth to a flame. And then the guy asked if he could help me. He ended up giving me a brochure for a place called “The Drum Factory” and sent me on my way. The gal at the front gave me a couple of numbers for nearby stores that sell and rent out other instruments.

I called the place and got information on saxophone lessons. I left my number and asked that the teacher call me. If he wasn’t available to teach me in the times I would need, then I’d pick a different instrument, simple as that.
I also registered at The Drum Factory for a free lesson.
The guy emailed me that same night and then called me the next day. He got me set up with a lesson for congas.

Tonight when I got to my lesson, the teacher hadn’t heard that he was supposed to bring congas to teach me on. I explained to him that I was still not sure what I wanted to play and did he think I would be a better conguera or timbalera?
He said that he thought timbales might be a better starting point and that we could turn me into the next Sheila E.

He taught me a pattern, wrote it down, and told me to practice it. A. LOT. He expected me to have it down by our next lesson.
I signed up, but I’m not sure I’m convinced on my timbales ability yet. The pattern is kind of daunting.
I go back next Wednesday, so I had better get practicing!

Besides, I haven’t heard back from the saxophone teacher, so maybe this was “meant to be.”