Category Archives: Music

Play the Symphony of Your Day

 “I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear…each one singing his…each singing what belongs to her and none else.” – Walt Whitman Take a moment to search with your ears to the sounds around you. It may be helpful to close your eyes – sound is noticed more fully when the eyes are closed. […]

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Quix Tip: How to Play Lightly

Notice a spot in your work that is calling for a very rapid tempo. Imagine what you could do to do that work perfectly. Now note what the minimum is that you could do right this moment. Notice which of the two approaches is going to allow you to produce something right now. Start by […]

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Play Lightly When the Rhythm is Fast

When playing jazz that has a swing rhythm to it, and the tempo is medium (walking pace or faster), many musicians find it helpful to tap their foot on the second and fourth beats that happen = 1 2 3 4. This reminds them of the swing rhythm emphasis (2 and 4 more than 1 […]

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How Music Team Building Gets Teams In Tune

“Hey everybody! Let’s have some fun! Let the good times roll!” sings one excited participant as the rest of her team plays blues riffs on their harmonicas. Someone is playing the guitar; another, the tambourine. Everyone on stage is wearing retro-sunglasses and classic blues hats and having fun. As a music team building facilitator, it’s […]

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Quest Story: ‘Our Love is Here To Stay’ By Rufus Collinson

‘Our Love is Here To Stay’ By Rufus Collinson One cold October afternoon several years ago, I accompanied Rob Fletcher, founder of Quixote Consulting, to a nursing home in Gloucester, MA where he was performing the music of Frank Sinatra for the residents. Standing before a group of nursing home residents and staff, he opened […]

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Quix Tip: DIY Name That Tune

In your car, press the scan button on the radio and see how many songs you can name. Set your computer music player program (iTunes, Windows Media Player, etc.) on shuffle, put one finger on the pause button, another on the next song button. Close your eyes, start playing the song. Pause after a few […]

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Practical advice from jazz guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkel

“You must be continually finding yourself, because it is always changing. It may not seem like it but that is practical advice.” – jazz guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkel (This quote was in response to an interview question asking for advice for young musicians.) We pride ourselves in being practical, and who couldn’t use some practical advice? […]

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A 99 for the Heart at the Asia Pacific Harmonica Festival

After spending an utterly exhausting afternoon/evening judging 109 different juveniles (age 6-13) playing solo harmonica, the next day I got ‘adjudicator dessert’. I judged a series of different categories that had only a handful of people in each. One was the senior category, very sweet. Another category was ‘younger than 6’. There was one contestant, […]

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Why the future of the harmonica is in good hands

In my lifetime, I’ve seen harmonica playing die out in the U.S. Not totally gone of course, but very diminished. I don’t mean all harmonica playing. For example, there are probably more diatonic harmonica players this decade and the last as well. What I mean is the tradition of playing the ‘other’ harmonicas – the […]

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Narcos on Netflix and Generosity

I just finished watching the first season of Narcos. This 10-episode series (on Netflix) plays like a 10-hour movie and gets so much right about balancing a great story with the truth of what happened. Set in 80s Colombia and cocaine crazy Miami, it traces the upwards and downwards trajectory of Pablo Escobar and other […]

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