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My family was very musical. My grandmother made sure her three boys, one of which was my dad, learned to play music. And they loved it.
My Uncle Duane was actually a musical prodigy. Amazing doesn’t even begin to describe the man. He never took a formal music lesson but could play any instrument you put in his hand and after hearing any song just once – sometimes not even all the way through – he could play it beautifully. Truly an amazing talent.
As a child I remember going with my family to the USO clubs that they played in. We’d dance and sing and just have a great time. From as far back as I can think we had music in our lives. I never learned to play an instrument but to this day I still love to sing. I’m not especially good at it but it lifts my spirits and makes me happy – as it always has.
My cousin, Karen (who was 5 months younger than me) was Duane’s daughter. And she was taught to play the piano at a very young age. I, for some unknown reason, was not allowed to participate or learn any instrument. I was actually made to sit in a chair perfectly still while Karen practiced daily. She hated practice – what child doesn’t – but when she and I got to play outside we had a great ole time singing all the songs we had heard the boys practice for their gigs at the USO club. These were the songs of the 50′s and 60′s. When I hear these songs on the radio today I still smile and sing my heart out.
There is just something about music. It has the ability to soothe you, excite you, give you hope, make you cry, make you laugh, make you silly, lift your spirits. Yes, we grew up with music. Not television so much – but rather music. All kinds of music. And even though I wasn’t encouraged to participate I still had a song in my heart.
As a young teenager I recall sitting outside the apartments I grew up in just singing myself out of a depressed and sad mood into a hopeful and optimistic attitude. I tried to find a place that was pretty, secluded and private. My singing wasn’t for anyone else but me. I guess I remember I wasn’t allowed to sing with everyone else so I made it something just to enjoy alone.
Singing is good for the soul.