Romantic to Us

Charlie is a piano player — a very good one.

Charlie plays the piano like it's a martial art.
Charlie plays the piano like it’s a martial art.

He has a natural stride style and can play almost anything — by reading music or by ear.

A stride player keeps the beat with the left hand jumping octaves in the bass note. (Notice the blur.)
A stride player keeps the beat with the left hand jumping octaves in the bass note. (Notice the blur.)

One piece that has eluded him over the years, one that he truly wants to play, is Rhapsody in Blue by George Gershwin, a mere 29 pages of glorious music.

Rhapsody in Blue
Rhapsody in Blue

One thing that makes RIB difficult is that it was written in Gershwin’s own style which is that the left hand and the right hand are both on their own course.  Charlie has a lot of Gershwin style himself.

George and Ira Gershwin
George and Ira Gershwin

When we met (almost 15 years ago) he had never encountered the Gershwin brothers before — as a matter of fact he thought George and Ira were brother and sister or husband and wife.

Any first grader could make a better envelope for their Valentine.
Any first grader could make a better envelope for their Valentine.

Now he knows better.  We both love Gershwin music and especially Rhapsody in Blue. So, my darling, happy Valentine’s Day.  Here is a copy of RIB especially printed for you to replace the copy we can’t find.

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The famous opening measure is a rising scale for a pianist or, more familiarly, a clarinet glissando.

Perhaps a piece of sheet music is not romantic to you, but to us — well — it’s a rhapsody.

What’s your idea of romance?



Author: Jo

Welcome to The Glade, where the second generation of renovations has just begun and the mania about our home, music and other passions fill our days and nights. We’re Charlie and Jo in the music world; Mary Jo and Charles to family; and JoJo and Charlie to each other. We are renovating a midcentury house in a Victorian historic district where we want to live there the rest of our lives. It's a 1946 house located in Maryland. We were married in this house. Thus far (pre-blog) we refinished cabinets, added a window seat (still working on the cushion), rearranged a wall in the guest house due to sink/vanity replacement, planted a vegetable garden, and other quick and not-so-quick fixes. So this latest zeal for construction is the result of my having lived here since 1997 and feeling a need to ready the house for the next chapter and beyond.

9 thoughts on “Romantic to Us”

  1. What a great Valentine’s Day gift!! We are “doing nothing” together tonight and what could be better than that?? Have a great day!!

  2. Do the two of you have any theories about Music and the mystery of its appeal? I can’t carry a tune but of course love Music and could listen to RIB forever- but our discovery that we could make noises that were pleasing to our souls and is universal in some form round the world and the plethora of instruments devised over the centuries- fascinates me. Didn’t someone suggest even the Universe has “The music of the Spheres? Lots of questions in my old brain-few have been answered-

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