The other night while sound checking for a gig at the Vienna Mozarthaus, I found soundcheck to be very easy. Then I found the gig to be very relaxed and easy.
It’s not always been like this. What did I do right?
I’ve had nights where I’ve fought the guitar, overpowered it, beat it into submission and make it do what I want it to do, even if I am drowned in sweat.
Why was it easy 2 nights ago? Hey maybe after 5 years of heavy touring – I’m finally learning something!
This may sound trite – but it’s quite profound: I offered no “resistance” to what I was hearing. I didn’t allow a “mental concept” to disagree with “what was happening in the moment.”
This meant not worrying about what anyone thought, not feeling that I was “required” to do a tune I wasn’t in the mood for, and also meant not “planning the next tune” during the current tune.
It meant “being present.”
My warm up was groovy and easy going. I didn’t flex all my chops back stage but got playing in a groove so I could dance along, like a well greased machine. Almost as you’d expect a tennis player to warm up.
The “sound” on the gig was perfect….I simply worked with what I had and listened closely, at each moment and accepted what I heard. The more I listened and allowed, the better the sound got.
Maybe it’s no coincidence that I meditated 30 minutes in the afternoon. My daily meditation sometimes gets thrown off when I travel a lot. But, after seeing how it affected my last gig, I am determined to stay on it for the rest of the tour.
Tuning my mind to pay attention to “what’s in front of me” (i.e. the present moment), rather wanting “something else” gave me peace. No energy was wasted in “pushing against” the present moment. I could hear and feel the difference.
30 minutes of silence…try it, you’ll like it!