Smiles and Grimaces


I enjoy the smiles I get from the bandstand whether they're mine or other people's. Audience smiles are the top because their smiles really make me want to play. I'm addicted to that…kind of.Grimaces happen more often than I care to enumerate. Just last night my knee gave me a new one.  Well, my knee has been in the top three of grimace-giving things anyway neck and neck with my troubled hip.
Then there is the “smile grimace” the judgement of which requires context resonance. I enjoyed a smile-grimace today on the hit with the Alan Easy Band in Huizen center at the Grand Cafe T’Heertje. There were some really great moments were the interplay was like mirror dancing. That’s a smile-grimace moment for me, you know, so nice you must skrunch your face with pleasure? Someone out there say “SEX”…but I’m trying not to run the cliches here or wear out the obvious…well kinda.
Then there were some not-so-great moments, awkward instances, those moments that make us all human: The “intro that never ends”, or “the ever missing 1”, or how about”sudden free jazz”—if you are someone who gets smiles from the bandstand like me, you know about these highly particular smiles-grimace moments. We are not supposed to tell the audience, but we may never be told that someone in the audience is a musician, maybe even a really good one.
Ultimately, we’ll have to explore opportunities to discover the grimace-smile…we can wait on a hypothesis and definition from our ubiquitous face readers or the high Seers at TSA.
The grimace is the bitter pill that decided to leave it’s mark on one’s face when the moment that brews it up is worth a trip to the Great Landfill of the Spirit. I’ve had to many of these to mention in the past several days, triggered by my shortcomings as a man seeking self-determination in a totalitarian context (for better or for worse)…I’ve come to rely on the smiles, smile-grimaces, and great musical moments to sweeten the bitter taste. Perhaps I can even make music of it all.

2 comments

  • Judy Fuller

    Judy Fuller Wilmington NC

    Hey Warren, You and my daughter, Justine, once lived in the same building. I bought one of your CD's while visiting her and just thought of you because it's on and I love it! Reminds me a little of Gene Harris who we used to listen to in Boise at the Idanha and of Curtis Stigers who played with Gene when Curtis was in High School. Curtis now tours Europe and often graces Boise with his music. Thanks for yours!

    Hey Warren,
    You and my daughter, Justine, once lived in the same building. I bought one of your CD's while visiting her and just thought of you because it's on and I love it! Reminds me a little of Gene Harris who we used to listen to in Boise at the Idanha and of Curtis Stigers who played with Gene when Curtis was in High School. Curtis now tours Europe and often graces Boise with his music. Thanks for yours!

  • Warren Byrd / Byrdspeak Productions

    Warren Byrd / Byrdspeak Productions

    Wow, Judy, thanks for the comment. It's my oversight that led to this delayed response, but I hope you are still enjoying my music. Thanks for the Gene Harris compliment; he was a firestorm! I have heard of Curtis Stigers; I'll check him out further--easy to do via internet. I still entertain hopes of creating a piece to which Justine can choreograph a dance although her movement studio seems to be an encompassing endeavor. NC, eh? I was in Winston-Salem in April 11-13 for a weekend of ecumenical concerts and workshops--nice! Joy to you!

    Wow, Judy, thanks for the comment. It's my oversight that led to this delayed response, but I hope you are still enjoying my music. Thanks for the Gene Harris compliment; he was a firestorm! I have heard of Curtis Stigers; I'll check him out further--easy to do via internet. I still entertain hopes of creating a piece to which Justine can choreograph a dance although her movement studio seems to be an encompassing endeavor. NC, eh? I was in Winston-Salem in April 11-13 for a weekend of ecumenical concerts and workshops--nice! Joy to you!

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