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Finding Kirtan....What?

11.11.2019 This morning I drove to Tucson to sell one or both of my harmoniums. I was reluctant to let go of both of them but decided that since they were both such hassles to get out and play, they'd both go.

My first harmonium became to cumbersome to lug outside and inside, back and forth to the studio and the house. Why back and forth? Because I love playing outdoors, LOVE IT! I love being outside with the horses, outside in nature and playing the harmonium. I can't keep it outside because of the drastic temperature changes. There is no air conditioning in my little studio. Now way to keep the temperature consistent and healthy (can I use that word for an inanimate object?) for the harmonium. I like to play inside the house as well. Only when I don't have time to take the harmonium outside to set it up or if it's late in the evening. My husband also enjoys practicing his bass along with me as I practice the harmonium. Inside and outside I go.

I decided to invest is smaller more compact harmonium to rectify the problem. One of the problems. The other problem I had with the first one was I had to constantly bump the bellows only to have the keys loose air quickly.

Months after I bought the used one, I bought a brand new one. It was compact, yes. I liked the sound of my old one better but, I was willing to let that go for how convenient it was to carry the new one back and forth.

However, the new smaller one was a major hassle to even lift up out of it's compartment. I finally threw in the towel when after wrestling with it for five minutes I was not even able to lift it out and play. I could see that I was scratching it up horribly trying to get the proper leverage. It would have to go.

My husband was able to get it in and out with minimal problems. Not as easily as it looked in the videos I'd seen. But he could get it out without scratching it up.

I've got to make this story shorter.....I emailed a harmonium instructor in Tucson and told her my plight. She suggested that before I make a final decision that I take a 60 minute lesson from her first and then decide. It sounded like a great plan. I thought, if she had some clever trick to get the smaller harmonium in and out of compartment, I'd sell the older, used one and continue learning and playing on the smaller, new harmonium,

That was one thought. The other thought was, I was going to sell both of them and just get a whole new instrument. One more suited for my soft voice. I always felt as though I was always fighting to hear myself over the harmonium. One that was lighter and much more portable for my small frame.

Let me just say, having lessons in person is so much more interactive and helpful!!!

As soon as the lady opened the door to her office, I knew I was at the right place. Speaking to the right person. She would help. And help she did!

I told her that I preferred the sound of my big harmonium over the smaller one. So, she decided to address my issues with that one first. She asked if I considered buying a small dolly to move it back and forth? Of course not. What a wonderful (obvious) idea. I smiled. My heart was lifting.

I took the big harmonium out of it's soft case. I told her about my second issue, low sustainability in the keys. She asked to see me play. She then explained that I was not giving enough air to the lower bellows. Lower bellows? She explained and demonstrated. My harmonium DOES have good key sustainability! I just wasn't giving it enough air.

Two down and one to go. Volume. She suggested a small cloth to put over the top part of the harmonium to muffle the sound a bit. I couldn't really hear the difference. But, if I understand correctly, I can't actually control the volume with knobs or buttons but I may be able to learn to control how hard I compress the keys as well as how much air I push into the bellows. Which will help a bit with volume adjustment. And the more confident I become, playing and singing, the volume of my voice will raise naturally.

I was so happy with my old harmonium I didn't even care about how to fix the new one. I brought my old one home and left the small one with Cynthia. She is going to take it apart and see what is making it stick. Then, I'll sell it.

Another thing that I admire about Cynthia is her pronunciation of the Sanskrit language as well as the way she teaches the Spirituality of Kirtan. It's what I have been seeking from the beginning of all of this.

Finding Kirtan!!! Not always staying focused. But, always on the Path.

I asked Cynthia if it is necessary for me to have a guru? She said, "Your harmonium becomes your guru."

That almost brought me to tears. Tears of Joy.

Again, let me tell myself AGAIN....this is my journey. My path. My experience. Right now, I am doing this just for me. Just ME.


Personal Kirtan Practice.

I'm getting ready to be ready to be ready to be ready. And that's just fine. Satisfying.

Be Joyful!

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