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Practice Makes Perfect

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Essay title: Practice Makes Perfect

Practice Makes Perfect

Ever since I can remember, everything was handed to me on a silver platter. Anything I wished for I received. The reason this happened to was, I have a very loving as well as caring family. Because of this pedestal that I was placed on as a child I never understood the hard fact that you had to work for something you wanted, and love for that item or goal wouldn’t be enough to take you there. This was until I was denied a position to play in the jazz band when I was in middle school. This set back, woke me up to grasp this important lesson.

I began playing the saxophone when I was in the seventh grade; I started off on an average pace in class with additional students. I even preformed better than most students at concerts and other musical endeavors. The only awful musical habit I developed was I would never practice more than an hour or so each week. As anyone in music or in any fine art knows, this is a major dilemma, but I still could not comprehend the concept that “practice makes perfect”.

About half way through my seventh grade year, my best friend who just happens to be my grandfather introduced me to this music called Jazz. This was a life changing experience for me. I heard those sweet sounds of “Bird” Charlie Parker. I soaked every ounce of it in; I listened to his melodic licks (as they are called in Jazz). I listened to the way he made all those technically difficult licks sound flawless. He played his horn similar to how a ventriloquist made his puppet seem human. The entire time I was listening to the C.D. I was jumping erratically on my grandparent’s pristine furniture shouting enthusiastically: “That’s it! That’s it! That’s what I want to

sound like!” What I didn’t realize was the “Yard-Bird practiced close to twenty hours a day, and me only a few hours a week if it was urgent practice time, which usually came a couple of days before a recital.

I recalled my school had a jazz band; therefore, I arrived an hour earlier than usual to school the next day. The reason for this madness was I wanted to have a discussion with my band director to see what I had to do to be in the band. I arrived at school before she or any of the other teachers for that matter. The moment I sighted her unlocking the band room I ran up to her: “Can I be in jazz band!” I said bluntly “ Not this year she said you’re only a seventh grader, but if you would like me to give you the audition material to practice; then you can try-out for next year’s band.”. I was encouraged with the fact that she was going to allow me to audition, but the word practice just me cringe. I assumed I would be able to practice the material maybe once or twice, just as I rehearsed everything else. My friends told me how challenging the piece was, and that they were practicing hours on end: me just minutes on end.

One week before the audition, I might have practiced the etude around five times compared to hundreds of times that other students have up to that point. This most likely made the jazz greats turn in their graves. But I felt I was doing pretty well with the piece, and there was nothing I wanted more than to hear a thunderous brass section in my ear; maybe even one day achieving the greatness as Charlie Parker did.

The day of the audition, I was more nervous than I ever could commit to memory in my entire life ; my fingers trembled as I went into the room, so worried I was that this apprehension I was feeling would limit me from being able to press the keys of my sax. But I managed and thought I had done a decent job. After we were acknowledged by the judges and our band director that we could leave I packed away my horn, and took the reed off the mouthpiece. Meanwhile knowing, that the future of my entire existence in music would be in the hands of my director; until, she would post the results the following day at school.

I couldn’t sleep all those hours of darkness; it felt as if I was on trial for murder and the verdict wouldn’t be given to me until the proceeding day to decide whether I may live or die.

I awoke extremely early that morning, and hurried to school on my bicycle, not wanting to wait for one of my parents to wake up and drive me. I was the first student to arrive at the band room door where the results were to be posted, so I could ensure myself a front row seat. About an hour and a half later the remaining students arrived. Then the director peaked her head out of the door to see if all the students who tried out were there. Then she went back to her office to get the results. Each step she took made the butterflies

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