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August 10, 2003
Vol. III, No. 24

"One Day at a Time"
I had a real hard time tearing myself away from the console this afternoon, I was having such a good time practicing. My fingers were digging into the keys and my legs just couldn't wait for the pedal entrances. I felt like I could have played forever.

I did have trouble getting started but eventually I got on a roll. The first thing that got me jazzed up was when I tested my memory on the Fugue from the D Minor (BWV 539). I haven't worked on it much lately but not only hadn't it deteriorated but it was stronger than ever. So I added some more measures and now I'm on the next to last page.

The other high point was the Prelude and Fugue in C Major (BWV 545). It's such a neat piece. While it seems a little awkward and choppy in spots, overall it makes so much sense when you really start getting into it. It was definitely composed out of the hands and not out of the head. I don't know about other instrumentalists but when keyboardists improvise they tend to play patterns that feel comfortable to their hands and I can definitely imagine Bach improvising this piece and then writing it down. It has a rich, full sound but on the chunky side rather than the long soaring lines of some of his more mature pieces.

Finally, there are few things in life you can count on so it's nice to know that when you practice something, it will improve. It's so satisfying to then play through it and experience that improvement. There's no better encouragement and sometimes that's all you need.
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Have a great week!

Dan Long

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