Home Forums Piano Related Discussions Miscellaneous The Sound of Silence

4 replies, 2 voices Last updated by  Ongaku 1 year, 7 months ago
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    Dennis Dooley


    Hi Ken,

    Hope thngs are going well where you are after a “rock ‘n roll” year. Here in Quebec things are good, but it seems like winter will never end.

    I came across this video of Paul Simon doing some serious guitar picking and I thought of you as you had mentioned an interest in perhaps taking up guitar.

    I have always been a huge fan of Simon and Garfunkel, not just for their wonderful music but also for what they stood for. To me they were the epitomy of intelligence and wholesomeness.

    I had them in such high esteem that somehow they were never supposed to grow old.

    Here they are. You can tell Art Garfunkel is struggling with his voice, but it is still a priceless performance. This brings back wonderful memories.

    The Sound of Silence

    Warmest greetings,




    Hi Dennis,

    Sorry for the delay, I use to get notified if someone inquired about me but apparently not any more. I even had a friend request I missed. Can’t have that. I need all the friends I can find.

    Anyway, I’m still hanging in, more or less.

    I couldn’t agree more with your admiration of Paul’s guitar genius. We seem to have a lot of similar tastes. You should check the acoustic work of Richard Thompson and Richard Shindell. I think you might find some of it appealing.

    I have yet to seek the counsel of the local music group. The scars from my last 2 attempts at finding a local music mentor are still fresh and if I lose my music at this point I’m not sure I could find it again.

    I did drop one more video up on my YouTube channel a couple months ago. Not sure if you’ve seen it but it’s title is Number 13. When I started recording my music in 2017, the recorder’s default naming convention was successive numbering and you guessed it, this was Number 13.

    I finally logged back into here tonight (well early morning to be specific) because I have to get back to my study. I have had it up to here with robotic doctors and lawyers and insurance companies. These are not life. Music is Life.




    BTW, Great video, beautiful music, beautiful words, beautiful recollection of a different time in my life.

    Brought tears to an old man’s eyes.



    Dennis Dooley

    Ah, you old sentimental! 😀 😀 😀

    Hi Ken, good to hear from you.

    I checked out Richard Thompson and Richard Shindell. They both seem great guitarists, though I prefer Shindell’s style.

    It sounds like you are having a tedious time with doctors, lawyers and insurance companies. Bureaucracy and passing the buck can really zap one’s energy and enthusiasm in a hurry.

    At least you still have music to distract you from all that rigmarole.

    I hope you don’t lose your music. I have a feeling that if you did put music aside, you would probably come back to it sooner or later.

    I have stopped my piano lessons at the end of March. Last Friday was my last lesson. I was feeling quite tired lately and I was quickly losing my motivation. The lessons were good, but I did not feel I was heading where I want to go with my music. I have to take time out to think about all this. But there is another factor too. We have a little cottage by a lake that we want to sell in the next few years. However, to sell it for a decent price it needs quite a bit of cosmetic work which I want to do this summer, and probably next summer too. Actually, I would like to start as soon as I can get in there — the road is not open in winter.

    This time out will be a good time to reflect on my music. When I am taking piano lessons, it seems I am always working hard. I would like to sit at the piano and play according to my own emotions and feelings for a while. I also want to get away from playing strictly from a notesheet. I want to be able to improvise and play what naturally comes to me. At this time, if I play something without the notesheet, it is something I have learnt (learned?) by heart.

    As I will be spending time at the cottage where there is no piano, I want to bring my classical guitar and practice playing it a bit. I ordered on eBay a clip-on guitar tuner and a set of butterfly guitar picks, since I keep my nails quite short. They’re coming from China so I may not receive them for a few weeks yet.

    Playing guitar after I have worked physically all day could be quite interesting and relaxing… and not a disturbance for people across the lake when sound travels over the water in the evening after the wind has died down.

    We just had a huge bilzzard yesterday. It sounded like the wind was going tear the roof off the house. We were having sings of spring lately, and that was pretty encouraging. Whatever patch of green grass was visible is now under a good 8 inches of snow. It should melt away fairly quickly as temperatures are above freezing over the weekend.

    I have been doing many chores around the house as I don’t expect to have much time or energy to do them this summer. Here is a picture of the humble little cottage (and our dog Charlotte).
    The cottage

    I checked out your video. Quite good actually. And you are quite the photographer. I am subscribed to your channel and now I have set it up to receive notification whenever a new video is posted.

    I am working on a lovely piece called “Un Été” composed by Elizabeth Dicker who lives in the UK. I would like to put it on video in the next few weeks before I get really busy.

    This is getting quite long so I will quit here.

    I hope things soon start to brighten up for you. Life is too short for all that stuff.

    Take care, and all the best. And a nice ‘Bonjour!’ to your wife.




    Hey Dennis,

    Thanks again for listening and I really appreciate the feedback. I personally find it difficult to judge my own music so hearing external viewpoints is important to me. I hope I can find a small audience in time but I realize the music I make is far from mainstream.

    Thanks also for the comments on my photography. I miss my large format 4×5 and darkroom but digital has come a long way so we move on.

    Wow!, Big changes happening in your music world. I can certainly understand your desire to play from the heart. For me that’s what it’s all about. Your piano education and experience will assist with the guitar I believe. Keep me updated, your goals and mine regarding music creation seem very much aligned.

    On the other hand, I’ve recently been seen with a note sheet in my lap working on the visual exercises laid out by our fearless leader in the sight reading course. I like Jaak’s approach and already see improvements in ability.

    OK, Richard Thompson can be an acquired taste. 🙂 You’ve probably heard him but I should have included Bert Jansch in that list. Paul Simon actually did a great cover of Bert’s “Angie”. Sadly he left us a few years back but the music lives on.

    Yea, 2017 was my personal “year of infamy” physically speaking but also the year I started creating music so I guess I came out ahead in the end.

    Nice cottage. That will be a fun project. I still fiddle about with my studio. It’s slow going but keeps my mind active. I just picked up a digital field recorder to try and record bird song and such in the back yard. I have some vague ideas about incorporating these recordings into my music. We’ll see.

    Well, good luck with all your activities. Will talk soon.


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