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Musically Speaking: Friends

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JJ Rocks Article # 71:
From St. Croix Music Magazine, Issue # 16, January, 2008
Well its another New Year and many of us are thinking about the promises that we are going to make to ourselves about quitting bad habits and starting good ones. But I think that one good habit that shouldnt have to be rekindled every year is the acknowledgement of our friends. It seems that throughout the year our friends get taken for granted and when the holidays arrive its all hugs and kisses that you hope will make up for the casual hellos and occasional handshakes that consume the rest of the calendar. Now of course with some of us those greetings always have the same sincerity all through the year and are only enhanced by this wonderful season. But there are others that feel a bit ashamed during the holiday love sharing because they suddenly realize that they should have shown that kind of friendship to others all the time. But soon the shame dissipates with time and the cycle starts all over again until next year. I guess thats just part of human nature to take your friends for granted. But this writer is going to try his best to not be like so many other people who forget about the year long friendship to the people that are always there at the other end of the phone. Thats my New Years promise to myself.

One of the things that really help is the fact that many of my friends are fellow musicians. That gives me a slight advantage over most friendships because instead of only having good conversation, we also communicate though playing music together. Playing music represents the ultimate unspoken words that go deeper into someones soul than any other form of conversation. Just imagine someone who walks into the room and only speaks French and it just happens that you know his or her language. Suddenly you have a bond with this person that separates you from the rest of the crowd and you wind up getting closer to them than anyone else in the room. Thats what its like when you play music with someone. You wind up communicating in a language that other people can only enjoy listening to but cant speak. Its a very cool thing to experience.

Now of course everyone doesnt play music, but that shouldnt stop anyone from trying to keep their friendships warm with others. Sometimes its just as simple as making a phone call or sending an e mail once in awhile to show someone that you care for them as a friend. But I guess many of us have second thoughts about that because they dont want to be greeted on the other end with a statement that has the flavor of Why did you call? Well, at least for me I think that this will be the year that I at least will attempt to make the first move when it comes to reaching out to my friends and saying hi, even if I sometimes get a cold shoulder.

I cant close this article without getting back to the musical part. You really dont have to be a musician to have at least some type of musical relationship with someone. I can remember as a child when I used to exchange albums with my friends and it seemed to bring us closer together. Music has a magic that is not confined to musicians but reaches out to anyone willing to listen and appreciate its value. So if you have a fear of rejection before calling or e mailing someone, just take out your favorite CD and then make the call and ask your friend if they have ever heard it. Its a great ice breaker and opener for a wonderful and loving conversation with someone that you really care about. Music is a universal communication and has probably brought more people together than any other source in history including religion, politics, and even wars. So you can see why its my choice. Happy New Year!

JJ Rocks - The Spotlight Zone